The Miami Heat still haven’t landed Damian Lillard. With training camp nearing and other teams emerging as suitors for the Portland Trail Blazers superstar, some Heat fans are worried that Miami might end up empty-handed in its pursuit of the point guard.
However, Ethan Skolnick of the “Five on the Floor” podcast said that some folks in the Heat organization were laughing at fans who have been panicking in recent days.
“The Miami Heat are not panicked by what’s out there,” Skolnick said. “They’re not. Does that mean they’re ultimately gonna end up with Dame Lillard? I can’t guarantee that. They can’t guarantee that. But what I’m telling you is the way that some fans were acting yesterday was making people inside the Heat organization laugh. In fact, a quote I got from one was, ‘It is like people are binging on steroids and Skittles.’ Calm the f— down, okay? There’s nothing that’s happened so far that leads me to believe that the Heat are out of this, that the Heat don’t want Dame.”
Skolnick also emphasized that Miami won’t technically be running the same roster back, as the squad will feature a different lineup when the regular season starts. Gone are Finals starters Gabe Vincent, who’s now with the Los Angeles Lakers, and Max Strus, who joined the Cleveland Cavaliers via a sign-and-trade deal.
Those are also reasons some of the Heat faithful have hit the panic button. Letting go of serviceable players presumably to make a run at a third star only to potentially whiff on the chase isn’t exactly inspiring. In addition, the organization has missed out on some key signings because it reportedly wants clarity on the Lillard situation first before making more roster moves.
However, it should also be noted that the organization will be getting back Tyler Herro from injury and brought in Josh Richardson via free agency. Moreover, the squad has some promising youngsters in Nikola Jovic, Jaime Jaquez Jr. and Jamal Cain. So, it’s not like Miami has had an awful offseason.
Only time will tell how the rest of the offseason plays out for Miami. Of course, the ideal situation would be to successfully trade for Lillard. After all, the seven-time All-Star appears to fill a need for the team, especially on the offensive end of the court, where it has struggled so much in past seasons.
But with or without Lillard, the Heat’s roster shouldn’t easily be counted out, especially because it still has Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo leading the way.