Pat Riley predicts Heat will re-sign Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem

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Dwyane Wade

Miami Heat president Pat Riley is confident Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem will return to South Beach next season.

Wade and Haslem are unrestricted free agents. Wade has said if he plays in 2018-19, it will only be with the Heat.

Haslem is expected to receive the $2.4 million veteran’s minimum. The 38-year-old only appeared in 14 games in 2017-18. He averaged 0.6 points, 0.7 rebounds and 0.4 assists in 72 minutes. Wade, meanwhile, will most likely get the Heat’s $5.3 million exception if he doesn’t retire.

Wade, 36, had an eventful year this past season. He started off playing with his pal LeBron James with the Cleveland Cavaliers, but it wasn’t the right fit for the Chicago native, as Wade’s heart and mind were still in Miami.

So, the Cavs did Wade — and themselves — a favor by trading the guard to the Heat at the February trade deadline. Wade was much more comfortable and productive in Miami, as he averaged 12.0 points in 21 regular season games.

Wade turned back the clock a few times during the Heat’s first round playoff loss to the Philadelphia 76ers. He scored 28 points in the Game 2 win, 25 in the Game 4 loss and averaged 16.6 points and 3.6 assists during the five-game series.

Riley wants Wade to come back, as he feels the future Hall of Famer can still play at a high-level.

“I want Dwyane back as a player, a guy who wants to have the greatest year he’s ever had as a player,” Riley said in July. “If he plays, he’s going to want to do it. We don’t want him back as a placemat holder or someone who’s going to be a veteran in the locker room. Dwyane is a great player, a great talent. He can make a big difference for us.”

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