(CBS) As rumors of a buyout continue to swirl around Dwyane Wade and the rebuilding Bulls, a targeted financial figure has surfaced.
With a parting of the ways between the sides viewed as a foregone conclusion by many in the league sooner or later, Wade would like $20 million of his owed $23.8 million for 2017-’18 in a buyout, the Sun-Times’ Joe Cowley reported Tuesday afternoon. That’s a payday the Bulls don’t intend to give Wade at this point, according to the report.
Neither Wade nor his representatives have contacted the Bulls yet to officially ask for a buyout, and Wade has had a busy offseason in which he’s spent most of his time away from Chicago. He’s currently on a vacation in Greece, where his group was accompanied by Grizzlies coach David Fizdale, with whom Wade shares a close relationship dating back to their shared days in Miami.
Previously, the Bulls have made clear that a Wade buyout would have to be beneficial to them.
“Dwyane was a great pro last year, and he’s been around a lot of different situations,” executive vice president of basketball operations John Paxson said in late June. “He was in Miami when they had a couple rebuilding years as well. So right now we’re operating under assumption that he’ll be here. But like I said, if that subject is ever broached by them, it would have to be advantageous for us.”
The deadline for players to be playoff-eligible with a new team is March 1, and it’s expected that a buyout will take place between the Bulls and Wade prior to then — if not well before.
Another factor to note is that Wade’s children have enrolled in school in Miami, 940 AM-WINZ’s Andy Slater reported, after attending class in Chicago in 2016-’17.
Wade, who turns 36 in January, averaged 18.3 points, 4.5 rebounds and 3.8 assists last season while shooting 43.4 percent. He played in 60 games, missing a longer stretch late in the season with a fractured bone in his elbow.
Wade currently projects as the starting shooting guard for the regular-season opener, but he may be relegated to coming off the bench when Zach LaVine — the centerpiece of the Jimmy Butler trade — is deemed healthy enough to return from his ACL rehab. In late April, Wade said he’d keep an open mind about coming off the bench.