If you thought that it was a forgone conclusion that the Miami Heat was going to swoop in and sign Caron Butler before any other team really had a puncher’s chance, you’re wrong. Butler still may very well end up on the Heat, at this point it would come as a surprise if he didn’t, but the Oklahoma City Thunder are at least going to make it a competition.
According to Adrian Wojnaroski of Yahoo, the Oklahoma City Thunder has a “strong” chance at inking the 33-year-old forward.
The fact that Oklahoma City stopped pursuing Danny Granger has led many in the NBA to believe the Thunder are confident in their recruitment of Butler….
Despite initial reports that Butler was destined to sign with Miami, Oklahoma City has a strong chance to land Butler, sources told Yahoo Sports. The Heat are competing to lure Butler back to where his career started as the 10th overall pick in the 2002 NBA draft, but the ability to fill the gap as a complementary scorer to Thunder starsKevin Durant and Russell Westbrook has made the Thunder an attractive destination, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
Oklahoma City could move Durant to power forward and slide Butler into the small forward spot in different lineup variations.
San Antonio is also rumored to be in the mix for Butler, but word around the league is that the Spurs are in a better spot to land Danny Granger than they are to land Butler.
Butler has a strong connection to the Miami Heat and Dwyane Wade. The Heat drafted Butler in 2002 and he played alongside Wade in 2003, before he was traded away in a package to the Los Angeles Lakers for Shaquille O’Neal in 2004.
Butler is expected to become a free agent late Friday afternoon, after reaching buyout agreement with the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday.