The Miami Heat have converted Yante Maten’s two-way contract into a regular deal, the team announced in a press release. Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reports that it’s a multiyear deal, partially guaranteed next season and beyond.
Although Maten hasn’t played any games for the Heat this season, his gaudy numbers with the team’s G League affiliate in Sioux Falls did not go unnoticed by the organization.
Maten averaged 23.5 points and 9.6 rebounds in 30 games of action for the Skyforce but struggled with ankle injuries in January and February.
Per Jackson, part of Maten’s 2019-20 deal will be guaranteed and his 2020-21 year will be guaranteed if he’s on the roster on opening day of that season.
The addition of Maten to the standard roster this year, with just three days left in the season, gives Miami a 14th player, the minimum allowable under league rules. It will also make him playoff eligible should the Heat make it that far (and wish to throw the 22-year-old into the deep end for his NBA debut).
According to Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel, who first reported on the signing, the Heat dipped into their mid-level exception to sign Maten.
The addition of Maten’s prorated deal this year will push the Heat deeper into the luxury tax territory, which could explain why the front office waited for the latest possible day to make one.
NBA teams may sign players up until the last day of the regular season but Sunday marks the deadline for teams with less than 14 players to reach that number.