The Miami Heat and Dwyane Wade don’t see eye to eye in the current contract negotiations. They want him to take a pay cut. Wade? He wants a raise.
The situation is quite simple. Wade has one more season left on his current deal. He’s supposed to make $16.125 million, but it’s a player option, and he can opt out. Wade opted out of his previous deal which would have paid him over $40 million last season and the next one combined but the Heat convinced him to “help out” so they can sign Chris Bosh on a five-year, max deal.
Wade doesn’t want to help out anymore. He wants a three-year, $20 million per season deal, or something close to that. The Heat were actually hoping Wade would opt out once more and take a massive pay cut. Something around $30 million for three years. Obviously, now there’s a huge rift between the sides, and the possibility of Wade actually playing somewhere else becomes a real one.
Are there any other teams in the league willing to pay Wade $20 million a season and on a long term deal? That’s not a certainty. His value is greater in Miami, the only place he’s ever played in since being drafted. Over the last four seasons, Wade has missed 78 games, and never less than 13. He’s probably still going to score around 20 points per game, but is it worth that much to anyone else but the Heat?
The Heat want to be in contention for meaningful free agents, maybe re-sign Goran Dragic and in short have some cap flexibility. Wade simply doesn’t want to be the one giving up on getting paid anymore (he also took a slight pay cut so Bosh and James could join in 2010). Players want success and there is a sense of loyalty here and there, but this is a business. Just like LeBron James decided he’s done with taking small pay cuts, Wade feels he’s entitled to the same treatment.