Goran Dragic was reportedly at FTX Arena Saturday night to watch the Nets and Heat. Not much of a surprise since the 35-year-old NBA vet has been working out in Florida while his representatives have been working out a buyout from the Spurs. He was traded by the Raptors to the Spurs on Thursday. A buyout is virtually inevitable.
The question is who and what was he watching. According to Frank Isola Thursday and Adrian Wojnarowski on Saturday, the 6’3” point guard is in Brooklyn’s sights. The next few days, teams will be waiving and buying out players, giving them enough time to sign with a new team by March 1, the buyout deadline. Any player waived after that day won’t be eligible for the post-season.
Isola, in the aftermath of the Nets-Sixers trade, said don’t be surprised if the Nets pursue Dragic while Woj said that Brooklyn is one of six teams in the mix for the Slovenian. The others are the Lakers, Warriors, Clippers, Bucks and Bulls. Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel suggested Friday that the Heat may also be interested in a reunion with Dragic.
Dragic played only five games with the Raptors this season before being sent home till Toronto could find him a new home, much like Paul Millsap was sent home by Brooklyn. Ten years ago, the Nets were prepared to offer Dragic a multi-year contract if Deron Williams decided to sign with Dallas.
The former All-Star, All-NBA selection and Most Improved Player is one of several players mentioned as buyout candidates. The list also reportedly includes Tristan Thompson, the 6’10” power forward who was also traded this week, to the Pacers and D.J. Augustin a 5’11” PG who was released by the Rockets on Thursday. Gary Harris of the Magic, a 6’4” shooting guard still with the Magic is another name associated with the Nets. Multiple teams are reportedly interested in them as well.
Kristian Winfield of the Daily News noted that Augustin played college ball at Texas for one year at Texas.
How soon might we know? A few days. Dragic will first have to be waived. Then once all the league’s teams pass on him — and his $19.4 million contract — teams will be able to recruit him at the vets minimum. Woj said the buyout negotiations are already underway.
If the Nets want to add another player, they’d have to find a way to reduce their roster which is now full.
- Nets among teams expected to pursue Goran Dragic after Spurs buy him out: report - Colin Martin - SNY
- Winderman’s view: Ruminating on a Dragic reunion, plus Heat-Nets thoughts - Ira Winderman - South Florida Sun-Sentinel