Lakers Free Agency Rumors: 76ers Sign-And-Trade Jimmy Butler To Heat
Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

The last few years have been unorthodox for Jimmy Butler as he forced himself out of two organizations: the Chicago Bulls and the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Butler finished out the 2018-19 NBA season with the Philadelphia 76ers before losing in the second round of the 2019 NBA playoffs and becoming an unrestricted free agent.

Despite the 2019 NBA free agency class being filled with All-Star players, Butler was still highly sought after on the open market. The 76ers made it clear they wanted to retain him as the Los Angeles Lakers, Houston Rockets, Brooklyn Nets, New York Nets, and Los Angeles Clippers were also teams that he was linked to at times.

However, after Butler met with the Miami Heat, the 76ers have signed-and-traded him, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic:

Butler will sign a four-year, $142 million deal with the Heat, according to Charania:

Miami did not have the cap space to sign Butler, which is why they turned to the sign-and-trade route and sent a solid player in Richardson to the 76ers.

While the Lakers were not able to sign Butler, their No. 1 option has always been Kawhi Leonard and Butler ending up in Miami may end up helping their cause. The team’s biggest competition for Leonard looks to be the Clippers, and they were attempting to sign Butler as a way of luring Leonard to them.

Now that the option of pairing Leonard with a second All-Star player on the Clippers is no longer a possibility, it may come down to the Lakers and Toronto Raptors for the services of the reigning NBA Finals MVP.

For the 76ers, while losing Butler is tough, they are replacing him with Richardson and Al Horford, who they also reportedly agreed to a deal with. So Philadelphia is still expected to be one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference next season, while Miami could establish themselves as a playoff team with a legit All-Star player in Butler now on their roster.

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