Sam Amick of The Athletic looked at Durant’s situation and noted that the Heat’s potential trade package might not include a key player that the superstar wants on his new team.
“As for the Miami possibility that also seems to be in play, I’m told there’s a significant obstacle on that front,” Amick wrote. “Durant, it seems, would only want to play on a Heat team that includes Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo and Kyle Lowry. So even if the Heat were willing to move Butler in a deal as a way of satisfying the Nets’ (understandably pricey) request, doing so would leave Durant discontented from the start.”
Durant’s trade request to the Nets was announced on Thursday, with a number of teams already looking into acquiring the superstar.
The Heat are one of those teams seeking the services of Durant. However, any package that the team does put together may not be enticing enough for the Nets, who are now in rebuilding mode.
Including the 32-year-old Butler in a proposed deal would remove from the Heat lineup a player who’s been the cornerstone of the team since his arrival in 2019.
In his first season, Butler helped lead the Heat to the 2020 NBA Finals. Then, this past season, he helped get them to Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals.
Adebayo is one of the Heat’s young standouts and giving him up would deal a major blow to the Heat’s front line. Lowry was acquired in a sign-and-trade last year and is still producing on the court at the age of 36.
If those three players are removed from any trade scenario, it seems doubtful that the Nets would be willing to go forth with trade discussions.
Following the Utah Jazz’s trade of center Rudy Gobert on Friday, the Heat’s chances of acquiring Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell have diminished considerably. What path the Heat take from here remains unknown.