Big men should be in the Miami Heat sightline for next season

MIAMI, FLORIDA - NOVEMBER 20: Meyers Leonard #0, Bam Adebayo #13 and Kendrick Nunn #25 of the Miami Heat react against the Cleveland Cavaliers during the first half at American Airlines Arena on November 20, 2019 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FLORIDA - NOVEMBER 20: Meyers Leonard #0, Bam Adebayo #13 and Kendrick Nunn #25 of the Miami Heat react against the Cleveland Cavaliers during the first half at American Airlines Arena on November 20, 2019 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /
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PORTLAND, OREGON – DECEMBER 30: Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers shoots the ball against Aron Baynes #46 of the Phoenix Suns during the second half of the game at the Moda Center on December 30, 2019 in Portland, Oregon. The Phoenix Suns top the Portland Trail Blazers 122-116. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images)
PORTLAND, OREGON – DECEMBER 30: Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers shoots the ball against Aron Baynes #46 of the Phoenix Suns during the second half of the game at the Moda Center on December 30, 2019 in Portland, Oregon. The Phoenix Suns top the Portland Trail Blazers 122-116. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images) /

Bruisers on the frontline

In the instance that Cousins comes off the board elsewhere, Miami’s big man attention should turn towards Aron Baynes.

Unfortunately, like Cousins, Baynes’ 32.7 percent three-point shooting is also a step down from that of Leonard’s. Yet, that comes with the caveat that Baynes had not shot more than seven total threes for the first five seasons of his eight-year career.

Over the last two-years, Baynes saw his three-point percentage raise 0.7 percent while cashing in on 36.4 percent from the right corner and 36.8 from the top of the key. Decent numbers, but not as impressive as Leonard’s 50 and 41.7 percent, respectively.

The other categories are where Baynes becomes an upgrade over what Leonard offered Miami over the stretch.

His season average of 5.6 rebounds per game makes him slightly more serviceable on the boards than Miami’s current incumbent, but a look at his defense is where the difference could really be made.

Both Baynes and Leonard are listed at 270 pounds, however, Baynes’ bulk allows him to bang on the block with the more offensively inclined centers. His defensive aggressiveness has also been shown through the number of times he contested and/or was not afraid to end up on an opponent’s poster during the 2019-20 season.

Baynes is a legit fallback plan and one with the lack of clout to contest coming off the bench or sitting out at the close of games.

Next. Miami Heat Rumors: Bam’s not leaving. dark

When it comes down to it, Riley has plenty of money to bring back his own free agents or tinker with additions while he also looks to catch his whale (did we mention that the game was full of clichés). Upgrading the middle will be a move that needs to be made either way.