Heat Rumors: Andre Iguodala's $15m Contract Option Declined; Warriors Linked

Tim Daniels@@TimDanielsBRFeatured Columnist IVAugust 1, 2021

MIAMI, FL - MAY 29: Andre Iguodala #28 of the Miami Heat looks on during Round One Game Four of the Eastern Conference Playoffs on May 29, 2021 at AmericanAirlines Arena in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2021 NBAE (Photo by David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images)
David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images

The Miami Heat have reportedly decided to decline the $15 million club option in the contract of wing Andre Iguodala for the 2021-22 season, which will make him an unrestricted free agent.

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported the news Sunday. 

Iguodala spent six seasons with Warriors, winning three championships and was named Finals MVP in 2015.

Iguodala averaged 4.4 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists across 63 appearances in a limited role (21.3 minutes per game) for the Heat during the 2020-21 season.

The 37-year-old University of Arizona product started his career as a key starter for the Philadelphia 76ers, averaging a career-high 19.9 points in 2007-08, and then transformed into a key role player for the Golden State Warriors while winning NBA championships in 2015, 2017 and 2018. He was named the 2015 NBA Finals MVP with the Dubs.

Tim Reynolds of the Associated Press reported Iguodala is expected to speak with the Warriors when free agency starts.

Although his offensive impact has waned in a smaller role, he's remained a reliable defender, including a positive defensive rating (+1.1) for Miami this past season, per FiveThirtyEight.

Iguodala shouldn't have much trouble generating interest from title contenders in free agency, even at this latter stage of his career.

Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times reported Saturday the 2012 All-Star selection was already on the radar of the Los Angeles Lakers, who have a lot of work to do as they build their roster around the trio of LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook.

Meanwhile, the Heat's decision to let Iguodala go doesn't come as a surprise as they seek financial flexibility before the free-agent market opens.

Longtime Toronto Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry is a "firm target" of Miami, either by creating more cap space or working on a sign-and-trade deal with the Raptors, per Wojnarowski.

Lowry would provide a major boost to the Heat, who are working to keep their championship window open after reaching the 2020 NBA Finals. They were swept in the first round of this year's playoffs by the eventual NBA champion Milwaukee Bucks.

The 35-year-old Philadelphia native would join Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo, Kendrick Nunn, Duncan Robinson and Tyler Herro as part of Miami's core.