Portland Trail Blazers star guard Damian Lillard made waves across the NBA on Saturday requesting a trade from the team.
Lillard specifically named the Miami Heat as his desired destination, confirming months of rumors that the star guard wanted to team up with Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo.
On Saturday, I created hypothetical odds for Lillard’s next team with Miami leading the way. However, there is one snag that could prevent Lillard from landing in South Beach.
Since he doesn’t have a no-trade clause, Lillard can’t force himself to Miami. The Blazers apparently aren’t going to just give in to his desire to play for the Heat either.
While that’s a little concerning for Miami’s chances of landing Lillard, the team can still use Tyler Herro to facilitate a Lillard deal, whether it is by sending him to Portland or involving a third team that takes on Herro and sends draft assets to the Blazers.
Oddsmakers seem to think that Lillard will eventually end up in Miami, as the latest NBA Finals odds have seen a major shift.
Miami Heat NBA championship odds
The Heat have moved from +1200 and +1300 to win the NBA Finals to +900 and +1000 at DraftKings and FanDuel Sportsbook following Lillard’s trade request.
It’s not a surprise that the Heat are the top option in the eyes of Vegas to land Lillard given his demand and Butler’s advocating for him as the team’s top target this offseason.
Lillard, a seven-time All-Star, had a great season for Portland in the 2022-23 campaign, averaging a career-high 32.2 points per game. He also put up 4.8 rebounds and 7.3 assists per game while shooting 46.3 percent from the field and 37.1 percent from 3-point range.
The Heat made the NBA Finals in the 2022-23 season despite being a No. 8 seed and Herro missing essentially the team’s entire playoff run. While Miami lost Gabe Vincent and Max Strus in free agency, adding Lillard would immediately make the team one of the favorites in the East.
At +1000, the Heat are still a solid value price in the futures market.
Odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.