Luol Deng has proven to be reliable but that may not entirely secure his spot with the Miami Heat, recent NBA free agents rumors indicated. Deng preferred to stay in South Beach and the feeling seemed mutual, as Heat president Pat Riley considered him one of the “core people” for the team.
Unfortunately anything is possible in the NBA. It is still a business and basketball fans have seen time and again that surprise deals can happen at the last time expected. Deng is no exception to that and is seen more as a contingency plan rather than a priority, Palm Beach Post reported.
There will be a lot of teams who will be interested in Deng, including the Golden State Warriors, Minnesota Timberwolves and the Utah Jazz. According to NBA free agents rumors and updates, the three Western Conference teams could make a run at the veteran forward.
Deng Joining Steph Curry and the Warriors?
The recently dethroned Warriors could be an interesting destination though like Deng’s case in Miami, he may end up as a contingency. Priority will be on keeping Harrison Barnes and going after Kevin Durant. If the Warriors end up with neither, adding Deng could be in the cards.
Reunion at Minnesota?
Other than the Warriors, the Minnesota Timberwolves are looming as a logical choice. For one, the team is now coached by Tom Thibodeau, Deng’s old coach with the Chicago Bulls per Fan Sided.
The fact that Thibodeau knows how to utilize Deng becomes an advantage. Being around the league for quite some time now, Deng could be the leader the young Timberwolves need. The team is gifted with promising young players that include two NBA Rookie of the Year awardee — Karl-Anthony Towns in 2016 and Andrew Wiggins in 2015.
Deng should easily fit in the small forward position with Ricky Rubio, Zack LaVine and incoming rookie Kris Dunn manning the backcourt. He will also add defensive punch to the Timberwolves, who already have offensive weapons in the roster.
Filling Up the Veteran Role in Utah
The Utah Jazz could be another team in the mix, Salt Lake Tribune revealed. Deng is one of multiple players being targeted by general manager Dennis Lindsey. The others in the Jazz wish list are Solomon Hill and Ryan Anderson as the team tries to be aggressive when free agency starts on Friday.
Like the T-Wolves, the Jazz are looking to ramp up their roster by adding depth and veteran talent. Deng, who averaged 12.3 points and 6.0 rebounds in 74 games in Miami last season, could bring veteran presence in Salt Lake City.
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