The player option will pay the big man $27.1 million, but now with Portland, as they get help in the paint with Jusuf Nurkic still healing from his leg injury, and Enes Kanter joining the Boston Celtics. Whiteside appeared in 72 games for the Heat last season, starting 53 of them, and averaged a double-double of 12.3 points and 11.3 rebounds per game, while only playing 23 minutes per game. He has spent seven seasons with the Heat and Sacramento Kings, averaging 13.4 points and 11.4 rebounds in his NBA career.
Both Harkless and Leonard are in the final year of their contracts as well, but will now be role players on a Heat team that is looking to move past the Dwayne Wade era, with D-Wade now retired. They are missing out on a big defensive presence, as Whiteside once led the league in blocks per game in the 2015-2016 season, and then in rebounds per game the following year. He finished third on the all-time blocks list in franchise history, but Butler will bring a different style of defensive presence, to go along with star power in South Beach.