The Washington Wizards are expected to explore trade options for veteran forward Danilo Gallinari, potentially keeping him off the buyout market for teams like the Miami Heat later this season.
According to Sam Amico of Hoops Wire, the struggling Wizards are likely to move on from the 35-year-old power forward as early as “the middle of December, when more players become trade-eligible.”
Danilo Gallinari could be a lead buyout option for the Miami Heat should the Washington Wizards fail to find a trade for the veteran forward.
Gallinari has played in 12 games this season, posting averages of 8.3 points and 3.0 rebounds while shooting 50% from the field and 30% from 3-point range. He did not play last season because of an ACL injury.
The 2-11 Wizards are expected to be active in the coming months. The report also cites guards Tyus Jones and Landry Shamet as players who could be traded.
“Gallinari isn’t the only name being mentioned when it comes to players the rebuilding Wizards could unload this season. Point guard Tyus Jones and shooting guard Landry Shamet are believed to be others — with even starting guard Jordan Poole also being viewed as an outside possibility as a trade candidate.”
If the Wizards are unable to find a trade for Gallinari, he could be a lead buyout candidate for the Heat or other teams looking for experienced forward help. Gallinari is making $6.8 million this season and is set to be a free agent next summer.
The Heat have shown interest in Gallinari in the past, as most recently in 2020 when he was nearly part of the mid-season trade that brought Andre Iguodala over from the Grizzlies.
The Heat have an open roster spot or could potentially waive Dru Smith to save money against the cap.
Gallinari is no longer the productive scorer he was during his most successful stints with the Knicks, Nuggets and Clippers, but he’s a career 38.1% 3-point shooter and his experience could be a nice fit in Miami’s offense.
With enough front-court options, the Heat aren’t likely to seek additions in the near term, but Gallinari’s name could be one worth monitoring over the next few weeks and months.