Report: Miami Heat keeping an eye on stars who might request trades this offseason

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The Miami Heat will quickly move on from a disappointing end to the NBA Finals, and ESPN NBA insider Brian Windhorst said they will start their offseason “hunting for a star.”

“They have draft picks at their disposal, and they potentially have tradeable contracts, and I think they’re going to go hunting for a star,” Windhorst said. “I don’t know if they’ll get one, I don’t know if it’ll all break their way. There’s other teams out there interested in it, and I’m not going to sit here and tell you who it is because I’ll get aggregated, but there are players they’re keeping an eye on and they have the ability to do it, especially if a player says, ‘Hey, send me to Miami.’ And they have a little window here before the second apron kicks in where they may be able to spend a little money. They have some draft picks they can trade. After the draft they can access their 2030 pick. They have the 18th pick in this draft, not that that’s super interesting. I don’t think they can beat all comers on a star trade but if a player says, ‘Send me to Miami’ in the next two weeks, they are not in the worst position of all time to make it.”

Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo couldn’t get the Heat past Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray and the Denver Nuggets to win the NBA championship, and the best way for Miami to remain in title contention could be to move on from using very solid role players as complements and instead get a third star to join the two it already has.

The Heat will face significant competition for trade targets from throughout the NBA, with player movement this offseason expected to lead to a “major reset” for the league.

One of the top names who could be on the market, Damian Lillard, has already expressed an interest in the Heat if the Portland Trail Blazers decide to deal him. But Lillard may be “actively” recruiting players to join up with him in Portland instead.

Bradley Beal of the Washington Wizards is another player possibly about to be made available, with the Washington Wizards’ new president taking a look at the best path forward for that team. Other top players being mentioned in the early offseason rumor mill are Trae Young of the Atlanta Hawks, Jaylen Brown of the Boston Celtics and Jordan Poole of the Golden State Warriors.

The Heat are fortunate their role players played so well because they might have increased their values on the trade market. Miami held onto Caleb Martin at the deadline last season, and he went on to have an outstanding postseason until falling off in the NBA Finals. He has one year remaining plus a player option on his contract and could be a valuable piece if Miami decides to revisit a possible trade.

Miami also showed it can win without Tyler Herro, who was injured in Game 1 of the first round and missed the rest of the playoffs. He was its third-leading scorer during the regular season, and with a contract extension about to kick in, he could be attractive to other teams.

The Heat have reached the conference finals three times in the past four seasons, but an NBA championship has eluded them. Landing another star player this offseason could finally help them break through to another ring.

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Mike is a veteran journalist who has covered the NBA for almost three decades. His introduction to the business included the legendary Heat-Knicks rivalry from the 1990s.