The Chicago Bulls made a big splash before the 2017 NBA Draft, trading their star player Jimmy Butler and the 16th pick in the NBA draft (Justin Patton) to the Minnesota Timberwolves in exchange for Zach LaVine, Kris Dunn and the seventh pick (Lauri Markkanen).
The move signified that the Bulls are beginning a rebuilding process after reaching the postseason in eight of the last nine seasons. But a rebuild doesn’t exactly fit into the plans of veteran Dwyane Wade, who opted into the final year and $24 million of his contract to remain in Chicago just before the draft without knowledge that the team was going to trade Butler.
With the Bulls seemingly positioning themselves to get one of the top prospects in next year’s draft loaded draft class such as Michael Porter Jr., Marvin Bagley III, or Luka Doncic it makes sense for both parties for Wade to get bought out so he can sign with a contender.
It appears that is most likely what is going to be happening in the next couple months, via Nick Friedell of ESPN:
Dwyane Wade isn’t long for the organization’s future and is expected to reach a buyout agreement at some point in the next few months.
If Wade does end up getting bought out then the Cleveland Cavaliers would be expected to pursue him, reuniting him with his good friend and former teammate LeBron James. That would give Cleveland one last attempt at another championship before James becomes a free agent next summer when he is expected to leave Cleveland.
Wade averaged 18.3 points, 4.5 rebounds and 3.8 assists per game last season in Chicago, so despite being 35-years-old he does still have some left in the tank.
He and James developed tremendous chemistry while winning back-to-back titles with the Miami Heat, so that could possibly be rekindled in the next couple months if Wade does indeed get bought out.