Biggest need the Heat must address at the 2021 NBA Trade Deadline
It’s been an up-and-down season for the Miami Heat. The defending Eastern Conference champions started the season slowly due to covid protocols and injuries. Then just before the All-Star break, head coach Eric Spoelstra and his crew found their stride after winning 15 out of 18 games that extended past the All-Star break. The Heat currently sit in fourth in the Eastern Conference with a record of 21-22. So it’s no surprise that they’re making noise this trade deadline, given the loaded star power in the East.
They’ve already made one transaction specifically trading Meyers Leonard to the Oklahoma City Thunder and a second-round draft pick in exchange for NBA veteran Trevor Ariza. Do they have to make more? And if so, what kind of player should they have their eyes on?
Someone who can boost the Heat’s offense
The Heat currently rank fifth in defensive ranking but are all the way down to 25th on the offensive side of the court. It makes sense why they are reportedly after Toronto Raptors’ point guard Kyle Lowry who can significantly help the team, especially come playoff time. The Heat have a hard time scoring the ball (27th in the league), getting offensive rebounds (30th in the league), and currently have one of the slowest paces in the league. Adding an offensive threat like Lowry, for example, can boost their scoring, playmaking, and play off-ball to get shots to go.
Another player the Heat reportedly has their eyes on is the Brooklyn Nets’ Spencer Dinwiddie, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania. This makes sense because the 27-year-old is coming off his best season yet where he averaged 20.6 points, 6.8 assists in 64 games last season. Although Dinwiddie is rehabbing from a partial ACL tear, there’s no question that he can provide additional scoring and contribute to the Heat’s offensive pace, which they badly need to improve right now.
Someone who can decrease Butler’s workload
There’s no question that Jimmy Butler is a spectacular player on both sides of the court but there’s only so much he can do. The forward should get the help he needs especially when handling the basketball come crunch time. As good as Tyler Herro has been in both his rookie and sophomore year, he isn’t a well-rounded point guard just yet. The Heat needs to find the perfect closing lineup especially since they’re bound to face the Nets, Philadelphia 76ers, or Milwaukee Bucks come playoff time.
Goron Dragic, who had an impressive run in the bubble, before getting hurt, is a good piece around Butler. However, it could potentially not be enough especially if you weigh in the guards he’ll be having to defend during the playoffs. Bam Adebayo will work his magic on the frontcourt but what the Heat needs is an additional player who can draw plays, set up Butler off the ball, and be an offensive threat.
The question ahead of the trade deadline remains the same for the Heat: Will they be willing to give up players like Herro and Duncan Robinson for a 35-year-old Lowry? If they want to make the most of Butler’s prime then the answer is a resounding yes!