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Luol Deng decides to opt-in for next season

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In a surprising move, Luol Deng has decided to opt-in to his contract for next season.

Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

Minutes after ESPN reported that Luol Deng would opt-out of his contract with the Miami Heat, the forward's agent confirmed that he would actually opt-in for next season with the Miami Heat.

Deng was widely thought to opt-out and seek a longer term deal, but has decided to accept the $10.1 million deal for next year, and become an unrestricted free agent the following season.

Agent Herb Rudoy said, "He thinks the team is going to be terrific." Deng will again be the starting small forward for the Miami Heat, and a mentor to Justise Winslow in his rookie year. Both Deng and Winslow played one season at Duke University under Coach K before leaving for the NBA.

That's a good thing for the Miami Heat. Winslow can use a great mentor like Deng at the same position, and someone with common interests. Deng is a true professional and can teach Winslow the game from his perspective. This is good for the Miami Heat because it keeps them competitive until 2016.

Miami now has a solid team to convince Dwyane Wade to stay and they should have everything they need to make a solid dent in the East, hoping that health is on their side.

Now the ball is in Dwyane Wade's court to see what he does with his free agency. Wade has yet to comment on his plans, but it seems as though he will go into free agency on Wednesday.