Despite some improved play of late, the Miami Heat clearly need some external help in order to once again become the championship contenders they were for much of the previous three seasons.
They could use an upgrade at point guard, as Kyle Lowry has been showing his age this year, but Jimmy Butler says he’d rather see Lowry remain in Miami.
Jimmy Butler on Kyle Lowry trade rumors. Says he doesn’t know what’s going to happen, but he wants Lowry on the Heat. That’s his guy. He ends his answer with a quick…
“He ain’t going nowhere.” pic.twitter.com/5VmVzLYMaT
— Will Manso (@WillManso) February 9, 2023
“I love Kyle as a NBA player, as a human being,” said Butler. “I want to play with Kyle, but so much is out of my control, and just like so much is out of his control, he could be my guy forever. I want him to be my teammate forever. Whatever happens happens, but that’s still gonna be my dog. He ain’t going nowhere.”
For years, Lowry has been a very solid floor general, 3-point shooter and defender. He was one of the biggest keys to the Toronto Raptors winning the NBA championship in 2019 and he has been named to six All-Star teams.
However, this season has been a different story for him.
The 36-year-old is averaging just 12.0 points and 5.3 assists per game this year while shooting 39.6 percent overall and 33.3 percent from 3-point range.
It has been rumored for weeks now that the Heat have been looking to move him, especially since he has one more year remaining on his contract that will pay him nearly $29.7 million next season.
They reportedly tried to put together a trade with the Minnesota Timberwolves that would’ve swapped him for D’Angelo Russell, but that option is off the table now that Russell is headed to the Los Angeles Lakers.
Not only has the team been, at the very least, open to moving Lowry, but there has reportedly also been a lot of tension between the two sides lately.
After defeating the Indiana Pacers 116-111 on Wednesday, the Heat are now 30-25 and in sixth place in the Eastern Conference. But there doesn’t seem to be the same vibe surrounding the team as there was in the past when many felt they were always a threat to reach the NBA Finals despite their record.
Although Miami ranks fifth in defensive rating, the team is just 26th in offensive rating, and it needs to improve that metric big time in order to have a shot at doing something special in the playoffs this spring.