The Miami Heat have had a busier offseason than expected. They came into the summer with zero cap space, but somehow, they were able to swing one major four-way deal.
Miami also sent a protected first-round pick to the Los Angeles Clippers in the deal.
Basically, the Heat traded for Butler, who will join a rather interesting roster.
So, here are the three biggest offseason takeaways for Miami:
3. They Still Need Perimeter Shooting
Adding Butler is obviously nice, but while Butler is a terrific all-around player, one area in which he doesn’t excel is perimeter shooting, and that is one of the biggest holes on the Heat’s roster.
Miami doesn’t have many knockdown shooters, with Kelly Olynyk and the injury-prone Goran Dragic probably representing two of the team’s best options from downtown.
Again, the Heat had no cap space this summer, so it’s not like they could have done too much to address the issue, but this is absolutely going to be a problem heading into next season and could ultimately end up keep Miami out of the playoffs.
There is still time for the Heat to make a move (Kyle Korver?), but if they go into next year with this current roster, their floor spacing is going to be atrocious.
2. Could They Be Gearing Up for 2020?
The Heat have already landed one max free agent in a sign-and-trade with Butler, but could they bring in another max guy next summer?
Pat Riley said earlier this year that Miami was gearing up for a run at a max free agent or two in 2020, and now that the Heat already have Butler on board, they could pursue another star to put alongside of him.
Of course, it won’t be that easy, as Miami now has Butler’s contract on the books, and if James Johnson and Olynyk decide to exercise their player options for the 2020-21 campaign (a very distinct possibility), that would throw a wrench into things.
But there is a chance for the Heat to have the chance to land another top-tier free agent next summer, and South Beach is always going to represent a viable landing spot.
1. They Desperately Wanted a Star
Since LeBron James departed during the summer of 2014, the Heat have been starving. Yes, Dwyane Wade has been around most of the time, and Chris Bosh was there for a bit, but it didn’t take long for the former to fall off the face of the earth, and blood clots abbreviated the career of the latter.
That led to the Heat being one of the most boring teams in the league over the last couple of years, and it was obvious that they needed some sort of spark to get them going.
Miami wasn’t expected to be a free-agent destination this summer because of its lack of cap space, but Riley made sure to do whatever he could to bring in an All-Star, and he did just that by going out and acquiring Butler.
Butler wasn’t the best free agent out there, but he was good enough for a team that pretty much stunk this past season.