DeMar DeRozan reportedly wants to join Miami Heat or Los Angeles Lakers but both face same huge hurdle to deal

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Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Both the Miami Heat and Los Angeles Lakers are serious contenders to land top free-agent DeMar DeRozan, however, both organizations face the same major hurdle toward completing a deal.

It has been a busy last few days in the NBA. On Sunday night, free agents around the game were able to start talking to organizations and negotiate new contracts for next year and beyond. Many star players came to terms on new pacts, including Paul George, Klay Thompson, and Chris Paul. However, one major name still remains on the block — DeMar DeRozan.

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The six-time All-Star is viewed by many as the best player left in NBA free agency and has quite a few interested suitors. The most notable of them are the Miami Heat and the Los Angeles Lakers, and a pair of reports on Tuesday indicated that both teams are a preferred destination for the 34-year-old.

First, the Miami Herald revealed that the Heat are very interested in acquiring DeRozan’s services, and two sources claimed the guard/forward has a similar interest. Furthermore, NBC Sports Chicago reported the team is open to a rumored sign and trade to send the Compton native to his hometown team. Unfortunately, both teams have the same challenge of making a trade a reality.

  • DeMar DeRozan stats (2023-24): 24.0 PPG, 4.3 RPG, 5.3 APG, 1.0 SPG, 33% 3PT

Each franchise does not have the money DeRozan is looking for in free agency and he would need to take a steep discount if he wanted to join the playoff-contending squads. The Miami Heat only have the $5.2 million taxpayer midlevel exception. They would need to put together a trade to add the star veteran, but it is unclear if the Bulls covet a player like Tyler Herro, who is sure to be included in any deal.

As for the Los Angeles Lakers, they reportedly could offer the $12.8 million non-taxpayer midlevel exception and then let DeRozan return to unrestricted free agency next offseason. DeMar DeRozan made $28.6 million last season and is looking for similar or more money this summer.

A trade could also be an avenue to bring DeRozan to La La Land next season if the organization is willing to part with a player such as Austin Reaves.

Also Read: Los Angeles Lakers GM opens up about trade rumors; suggests blockbuster could happen

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