The NBA trade deadline had a flurry of big moves, shifting the landscape of the league. However, the Miami Heat were one of the few teams to stand pat, only making a minor move, which was surprising. Miami had been linked to many different names but did not make a move.

While this is disappointing, they can still make some moves through the buyout market. The Heat is not a team that is about to rebuild, as they have a quality core. They sit at 30-25, putting them in 6th place in the Eastern Conference.

With the Brooklyn Nets trading away Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant, Miami could jump up to the 5th seed. They are led by Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo, and Tyler Herro, with surrounding pieces like Kyle Lowry, Victor Oladipo, Gabe Vincent, Max Strus, Duncan Robinson, and Orlando Robinson.

It’s a team with some solid star power but lacks depth. Making an addition on the buyout market is a must for the Heat if they want to be among the contenders in the Eastern Conference.

Butler has proven to elevate his game when it matters most in the playoffs. However, the competition is tougher in the East this season, and adding more depth would go a long way in making a run.

With that said, here is why the Heat must sign Russell Westbrook is he reaches a buyout with the Utah Jazz.

Why The Heat Must Sign Russell Westbrook

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Westbrook was traded from the Lakers to the Jazz in a big deal that yielded them more depth. Westbrook and Utah could work out a buyout so he can join a contending team and make an impact. The Jazz wouldn’t have use for him, as they are a young rebuilding team trying to get their young players’ minutes together. While Westbrook hasn’t ruled out playing for the Jazz, according to their general manager, it makes more sense for both sides to let him go.

However, Miami could be a great destination for the 34-year-old guard. The nine-time All-Star rejuvenated his role as the 6th man for the Lakers, but it was overall a bad fit. Westbrook is still a good player and could make an impact for the Heat. He is averaging 15.9 points, 6.2 rebounds, 7.5 assists, and a steal. Westbrook is turning over the ball 3.5 times per game while shooting 41.7 percent from the field and 29.6 percent from three.

He has played better on the defensive side of the ball as well this season. With the Lakers, he was tasked to guard forwards at times due to their lack of depth at wing. Although it was challenging, Westbrook did a solid job in that role.

Westbrook would give Miami’s rotation improved depth, as he could be the 6th man or start at point guard. While Westbrook isn’t a shooter, which the Heat lack, he would give them much-needed depth.

Westbrook’s talent, energy, and intensity fit the embodiment of what the Heat looks for in a player. It’s going to be difficult to get past teams like the Boston Celtics, Milwaukee Bucks, Philadelphia 76ers, and Cleveland Cavaliers. Adding Westbrook would give Erik Spoelstra’s rotation an added punch for opposing teams to gameplan against.

The Heat have some work to do in the East if they’re going to compete for a title. Adding Westbrook would be a great addition.