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RUMOR: Heat ‘will keep an eye on’ Gordon Hayward if they strike out on Kevin Durant, Donovan Mitchell

Kevin Durant, Donovan Mitchell, Heat, Gordon Hayward

The Miami Heat are still seen as potential landing spots for stars Kevin Durant or Donovan Mitchell. One, not both. But, there hasn’t been a lot of movement on the trade front involving the two All-Stars, which could result in the Heat shifting their focus elsewhere. The player they may pursue? Charlotte Hornets veteran Gordon Hayward, who is much more affordable.

This is what an anonymous executive told Heavy Sports:

“I think a guy the Heat will keep an eye on is Gordon Hayward,” the exec said of the Charlotte Hornets’ 6-foot-7 All-Star forward.

“Charlotte’s in a tough position with the (Miles) Bridges thing, they have (Steve) Clifford coming in, they’re in a position to rest things a little bit around LaMelo Ball. Hayward has two years left,” the exec continued.

“If  the Heat want to give up [Tyler] Herro before you pay him and you want to move [Duncan] Robinson, you would have to add a pick, but those two guys and Omer [Yurtseven], that might be enough to get Hayward if the Hornets decide to reconfigure.”

The executive also said the Heat have shown interest in Hayward in past years. He actually previously visited Miami for a meeting in 2017 and absolutely loved the franchise, but a deal didn’t come to fruition. Hayward inked a four-year, $120 million contract with the Hornets in 2020 but hasn’t been available a ton. The former Utah Jazz standout suffered a season-ending ankle injury in February. Before that, he was averaging 15.9 points per night.

The Heat certainly needs to fill the void left by P.J. Tucker, who signed with the Philadelphia 76ers in free agency. Tucker was a huge piece to the puzzle but Hayward’s promise on both ends of the floor could prove to be a nice replacement for Tucker if he can stay healthy.