Hassan Whiteside has agreed in principle to sign with the Miami Heat; terms of the deal have not been officially released, but it is reportedly a four-year maximum contract starting at about $22 million next season. Whiteside originally made the announcement on Snapchat, and later posted to The Players' Tribune.
Btw, before announcing on Players Tribune, Hassan Whiteside scooped himself on Snapchat. Love it. pic.twitter.com/iO2HWygnza— Rachel Nichols (@Rachel__Nichols) July 1, 2016
The Portland Trail Blazers were reportedly one of three teams to secure a meeting with Whiteside, but the Miami center ultimately opted to stay with his original team.
The Blazers had hoped that the 7'0", 265-pound Whiteside would provide a significant upgrade to their starting frontcourt. He finished among the league leaders last season averaging 12 rebounds and 4 blocked shots per game. He was selected to the NBA's all-defensive second team. Whiteside also added 14 points per game on 61% field goal shooting. His presence will serve to anchor the Miami defense for the next four years.
Despite being 27-years old, Whiteside has played only four seasons in the NBA. He emerged seemingly out of nowhere as a Developmental League call up during the 2014-2015 season. Before that, the former second-round pick had been cut by several teams amid questions about his maturity. When Whiteside signs a maximum contract, two years removed from playing in the local YMCA, it will be seen as one of the true rags-to-riches story in recent NBA history.