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ESPN ranks Ellington best remaining unrestricted free agent

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The Heat may have trouble re-signing both Dwyane Wade and Wayne Ellington.

NBA: Toronto Raptors at Miami Heat Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

The Miami Heat and Wayne Ellington haven’t agreed to a new deal for the sharpshooter to return to Miami. And now, ESPN’s Kevin Pelton published a story of the best remaining free agents.

Ellington ranks eighth among all free agents and is the leading unrestricted free agent.

In the article, Pelton says that Ellington is “probably looking at offers for the midlevel exception at most.” The full midlevel exception is $8.6 million for next season, and the Heat can offer a contract starting at $10.9 million for Ellington.

The problem for Miami, though is their proximity to the NBA’s punitive luxury tax.

Pat Riley could wait to see if Dwyane Wade retires before offering Ellington a contract. As I’ve discussed earlier, Wade would probably return on a $5.4 million contract were he to play for one more year.

In a perfect world, the Heat would re-sign both Ellington and Wade — to have their best 3-point shooter from last season back, as well as the face of the franchise. But will it happen? Hopefully the next few days will offer some positive developments.