The Miami Heat have reportedly made Indiana Pacers guard Victor Oladipo their main target for 2021 free agency.
The Heat’s interest in Milwaukee Bucks center Giannis Antetokounmpo is hardly a secret yet, according to the Miami Herald‘s Barry Jackson, pursuing Oladipo would leave less resistance, taking Giannis’s lure into consideration.
“Indiana guard Victor Oladipo (2021 unrestricted free agent): He trains in South Florida in the offseason, and from all indications, likes South Florida. The Heat likes his game. And there’s this: ESPN reported that the Pacers and Oladipo had talks about an extension before the season but concluded it was best to table those discussions.
“SNY reported that at one point in those conversations, the Pacers broached a four-year extension for around $80 million. Talks didn’t progress much from there.
“I would put him No. 1 on the most likely list if Miami doesn’t get Antetokounmpo, and if he returns to his old form – two big ifs.”
Victor Oladipo Was Once Billed As The Next Dwyane Wade
The 28-year-old missed more than a year of action after rupturing his quadriceps tendon and only returned to the court in January. He averaged 13.8 points per game on 39.1 percent shooting from the field and 30.4 percent from beyond the arc. However, he posted an average of 23.1 points per contest in the 78 games he played during the 2017/18 campaign and 18.8 in 36 outings in 2018/19.
Upon entering the league in 2013, the former Indiana college star was likened to Heat icon Dwyane Wade and the two are good friends. Talks of the similarities have tailed off over the years; however, Oladipo still presents an exciting prospect for Miami, one they’d do well to look into should he indicate he’d be willing to leave Indiana.