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Victor Oladipo, Heat Reportedly Agree to New Contract in Free Agency

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistAugust 4, 2021

Miami Heat guard Victor Oladipo (4) dribbles the ball during a NBA basketball game against the Cleveland Cavaliers, Saturday, April 3, 2021, in Miami. (AP Photo/Marta Lavandier)
Marta Lavandier/Associated Press

Victor Oladipo played just four games for the Miami Heat in 2020-21, but he is coming back for more.

Miami re-signed the guard to a new contract Wednesday, according to The Athletic and Stadium's Shams Charania.

Terms were not immediately available.

Shams Charania @ShamsCharania

Oladipo will eye 2022 free agency to return to the market and sign a big contract once he's fully healthy. Miami will retain Oladipo's Bird Rights, allowing them to find the means to sign him again next offseason. https://t.co/IRPUndKXgj

The biggest concern with Oladipo is health, as he underwent a second surgery in 28 months on his right quadriceps tendon in May.

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported at the time that orthopedic surgeon Dr. Jonathan Glashow believed the Indiana product would be ready to play while raising concern about the January 2019 procedure he did not perform:

"I repaired the quad tendon and did it a little differently than [he had] it done before. The quad wasn't really hooked up. It was torn, and I reattached it. I was amazed he was playing with what he had. I'm very optimistic that I could clear him in six months, by November. I think he's going to play really well again.

"[The surgery] went extremely well, and it's healing beautifully. I'm confident he'll play next year."

That is welcome news for the Heat, who'll look to return to the NBA Finals for the second time in a three-year stretch and could use a productive Oladipo.

He was once among the best two-way players in the NBA as a two-time All-Star who led the league with 2.4 steals per game in 2017-18. He won the NBA's Most Improved Player Award that year and was an All-NBA third-team and All-Defensive first-team selection.

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His Indiana Pacers pushed LeBron James' Cleveland Cavaliers to seven games during the playoffs that season as well.

Oladipo entered the league as the No. 2 overall pick of the 2013 NBA draft. He played three seasons with the Orlando Magic, one with the Oklahoma City Thunder and three-plus seasons with the Pacers before they traded him to the Houston Rockets in January 2021.

Houston traded him to the Heat two months later, and it appeared he would have an opportunity to help a contender compete for a championship as he worked his way back to form from his 2019 surgery.

However, he played just four games for Miami before another setback.

He averaged 19.8 points, 4.8 rebounds, 4.6 assists and 1.4 steals per night while shooting 40.8 percent from the field and 32.6 percent from deep across 33 games in 2020-21. While he wasn't the same player as in his prime, he flashed some of the explosiveness he was known for.

The question is how quickly Oladipo will return to 100 percent, although he is still just 29 years old as he starts his latest comeback on a new deal.

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