Lillard declared that the Heat are the only team he wants to be sent to, and according to John Gambadoro, he could be traded as soon as “within the next 24 hours”
John Gambadoro on Damian Lillard:
“Damian Lillard is going to be traded very soon… I would even probably say within the next 24 hours.”
— Ahn Fire Digital (@AhnFireDigital) September 21, 2023
Heat guard Tyler Herro posted a photo on social media shortly after that had a cryptic message, which may or may not have been related to the trade rumors that have been circulating the young guard.
Herro’s name has come up in some hypothetical trade packages for Lillard, and letting go of him may be a necessity for Miami if it is to accomplish its goal of landing the seven-time All-Star.
Lillard has played all 11 of his seasons in the NBA with the Blazers, but they have failed to put a championship-caliber supporting cast around him. During that time, they have reached the Western Conference Finals only once, and they have missed the playoffs in both of the last two seasons.
More recently, Portland has gotten considerably younger, and with incoming rookie guard Scoot Henderson possessing star potential, this is as good a time as any for it to trade Lillard and get some value for him.
If Herro doesn’t end up getting traded, there is a chance he will start as the Heat’s primary ball-handler, with recent pickup Josh Richardson also a name to look out for in regards to potential ball-handling duties.
The University of Kentucky product averaged 20.1 points and 4.2 assists a game last season, and the year prior, he won the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year award. Unfortunately, a hand injury kept him out of most of the 2023 playoffs, and it was a major factor in the Heat losing in the NBA Finals to the Denver Nuggets in five games.