Recently, the Miami Heat still reportedly had an interest in trading for Oklahoma City’s Chris Paul, but is acquiring the 9-time all-star worth the price?
When thinking about the potential of the Miami Heat with Chris Paul in tow, the imagination runs endlessly across the different ways he could make an impact in Miami. Paul’s seven appearances on the All-Defensive first-team translate well into an organizational culture that champions defense, while his 3-point shooting and playmaking ability could maximize the potential of a lineup that is seeking an offensive resurgence upon the signing of shooting guard Jimmy Butler.
Although anticipation of a Chris Paul acquisition has fizzled since Miami Heat president Pat Riley hinted at delaying trade talks with the Thunder, there are reasons involving extensive salary cap demands that Miami is smart to pause the execution of such a deal.
The potential taking on of the maximum contract of the North Carolina native would hinder opportunities to sign free agents during a highly-anticipated 2021 free agency period, which in turn would impact the hopes of complimenting an underrated core that could rival the Miami Heat’s back-to-back championship teams from 2012 and 2013.
Even as the regular season starts later this month, the question still stands: who or what does Miami need to become a legitimate playoff threat to both conferences?
Regardless of whether the NBA championship-winning teams for any year in particular have been renowned for spectacular play on offense or defense, since 2010, these teams have had an average of two players that score at least 18 points per game during the regular season. During that same period, team scoring has increased by close to 10 points per game, greatly in part to faster offensive possessions and the expanded usage of the 3-point shot by teams such as the Golden State Warriors and the Houston Rockets.