With NBA free agency just around the corner, talks about Miami Heat’s Hassan Whiteside deserving a maximum contract than Toronto Raptors Bismak Biyombo and rumors are swirling as well as both players are in the Los Angeles Lakers list this summer.
Whiteside signed a signed a two-year $1.75 million contract with the Miami Heat and going into this summer, he is expected to be offered with a maximum deal offer to remain with the Heat for a couple years. But being an unrestricted free agent, Whiteside can also start looking at what other teams could offer him, especially with the $64 million space cap from the Lakers, it’s no doubt that Whiteside might be in for a ride this summer.
The Lakers for their part has been lacking in the center position and if they could get Whiteside this summer, they would have a strong enforcer inside the paint and could play alongside Julius Randle. Whiteside posted on his social media account the importance of a center to a team and how they can be game changers at times.
“If you haven’t learned anything from watching the playoffs,” the Heat center posted on Twitter, “it’s clear how important the center position is.”
Whiteside has proven that he could be a rim protector, shot blocker and rebounder all at the same time. His career average is at 11.7 points with 9.9 rebounds and 2.9 blocks. Those numbers have increased per game as Whiteside averages 14.2 points with 11.8 rebounds, and 3.7 blocks making him a perfect candidate for the Lakers to pursue this summer.
Whiteside had got into some trouble during the season with his short temper but teams such as the Lakers are still poised to create an intriguing trade as possible to prevent the Heat from sending Whiteside to other teams. It has been rumored that Roy Hibbert, Nick Young, and Brandon Bass are most likely to be placed on the trading block to encourage Pat Riley and the Heat to let go of Whiteside.
On the other hand, Bismak Biyombo of the Toronto Raptors has stolen the limelight with his performance against LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers. Despite losing the Eastern Conference Finals, the Raptors managed to finish strong as ever in franchise history.
Biyombo signed a two-year $5,754,630 contract with the Toronto Raptors with a player option on the second year making him also an unrestricted free agent this summer. Biyombo hopes to land a maximum contract with the Raptors or with other teams if negotiations turn sour. The Raptors does not have Biyombo’s Bird rights, meaning it cannot go over the salary cap to sign him. General manager Masai Ujiri stated that they will do whatever he could to keep him, but it seems there is no simple way to do that now.
Good thing for Biyombo, the Lakers are still looking at possibilities of taking in a rim protector who would be a beast on both ends of the floor. He is the ideal player for the position which Hibbert could not actively play within the past season, thus, if the Lakers and other teams present him with luxurious offers, Biyombo will have his eyes rolling back and forth with the number that he is expected to receive.
Whatever happens now until July 1, one thing is for sure Whiteside and Biyombo will have a busy summer to attend to and they will have to make difficult decisions to make that will benefit their future careers in the with either the Lakers or with other teams in the NBA.