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UPDATE: Hassan Whiteside Agrees to 4-Year Max Offer with Miami Heat

Despite dangling a near max deal in front of Chandler Parsons, there exist scenarios in which the Blazers can still max Hassan Whiteside as well.

Streeter Lecka/Getty Images


Early Friday morning free agent center Hassan Whiteside announced via SnapChat that he would be returning to Miami on a 4-year max offer.


Late Thursday evening, TheVertical reported that the Portland Trail Blazers were preparing an offer to Chandler Parsons for 4-years and $96 million.

What does that mean for the Blazers' cap space going forward? How does this impact the courting of Hassan Whiteside? There are a couple of scenarios to go through here.

First of all, yes it's still financially possible to pursue and offer Whiteside a max contract. Like Parsons, Whiteside is under six years in the league and a non-Bird rights player. That means their max offers work out to be the same. They could be structured differently, but inherently the same.

How you get to that point though is a little difficult. The Trail Blazers have to renounce both Maurice Harkless and Meyers Leonard (restricted free agents). Together those two combine for nearly $15 million in salary cap holds. You can no longer think about Gerald Henderson, and of course Chris Kaman and Brian Roberts are out the door as well.

At this point you're nearly there, but this is where it gets tricky. In order to make the max offer to Whiteside the Blazers will have to move either Al-Farouq Aminu or Ed Davis. Both Davis and Aminu are on amazing value deals, and both are on descending value contracts, making them incredibly nice trade chips in today's CBA climate.

One would hope that the Blazers could move either for at least a 1st round draft pick or younger players still on rookie deals. However, there is the possibility that they could just be moved to a team that could absorb them and take back next to nothing in order to facilitate to move and free up cap space.

If the Blazers opted to move Aminu this is what the roster could potentially look like.

The Blazers could field a starting lineup of: Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum, Chandler Parsons, Ed Davis/Noah Vonleh, and Hassan Whiteside. Their bench depth would be almost non-existent, but they do have the opportunity to keep Allen Crabbe in this scenario. The caveat here is that this is only true if there is no offer sheet for Crabbe before the offer to Whiteside is made.

If you're wondering what the cap structure would look like if the Blazers were theoretically able to keep Aminu, here's what it would look like.

Here you can see that the Blazers are over the cap, which actually can't happen so it's a moot point, but you can see the tipping point in here that's necessary to make another max level offer.

One thing to consider here is that if this was put into place the Blazers would have over $100 million dollars committed by the beginning of the 2017-18 season into four players. Lillard will be on average $25 million, as will both Parsons and Whiteside (or a shade under at $24.5m) then you factor in McCollum's deal (which looks most definitely like a max) and he'll be at roughly $26 million. Then factor in a deal for Crabbe at $14-15 million and you've got $115 million tied up in 5 players with no bench and Paul Allen finds himself in serious luxury tax problems.

By that time (in this scenario) the Blazers will be repeat tax offenders and Allen will be paying up to $4.25 for every dollar over the cap. If that's the case, that version of the Blazers better be a title contending team because he'll be forking over truckloads of cash.

While it's still financially feasible to offer Whiteside a max contract alongside Parsons, it's easy to begin to see how difficult it would be logistically as well as what it would do to the roster composition going forward. So, while the dream of landing Whiteside may not be completely dead, it probably should be.