4 Fake trades for the Heat to consider this silly season

To kick off the unofficial start of the NBA’s trade season, we take a look at a handful of names to watch between now and the February trade deadline.

Cleveland Cavaliers v Miami Heat
Cleveland Cavaliers v Miami Heat / Rich Storry/GettyImages
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Friday, Dec. 15, is the unofficial start of the NBA’s trade season. That’s because most of the league’s contracts signed in the offseason become trade-eligible. 

This doesn’t mean fans should expect a flurry of moves, but it does clear the road for negotiations between front offices to begin in earnest. Deals that were once hypothetical become more realistic, and conversations now can lead to moves before February’s trade deadline.

While we won’t be dealing only with players who become trade-eligible on Friday – that list of targets can be found here – these are some fake trades that could help the Miami Heat make a meaningful upgrade to try to maximize their championship window. Some of these players are stars, some are high-end role players, and all come with a trade that could make sense for all parties involved.

The Heat Finally Get Their Star

Miami gets: Donovan Mitchell

Cleveland gets: Tyler Herro, Jaime Jaquez Jr., two first-round picks

This trade was floated out by The Ringer’s Michael Pina and it’s interesting for a lot of reasons. After striking out on the likes of Kevin Durant and Donovan Mitchell over the last two years, the Heat finally get a star scorer to pair with Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo. 

It comes at the expense of Herro and Jaquez, the star rookie that ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski recently suggested might already be untouchable in trade talks

If the Cavs fear that he won’t re-sign and decide to make Mitchell available, there will be several teams in line. The Knicks, 76ers, Raptors, Lakers, Pacers, Warriors, Magic, Bulls, and more could all think about making an offer. If the Heat are facing a bidding war, Jaquez may have to be included in an offer. Surely, Miami would prefer to keep its surprising rookie out of the deal. Could the Heat swap Nikola Jovic in his place? Would it be worth unprotecting the picks in 2028 and 2030, or unlocking a third first-round pick to include in a deal? 

It all depends on how badly they want Mitchell, and if they think he elevates them to the same level as Boston, Milwaukee and Philadelphia in the East.

Heat Swap Point Guards

Miami gets: Terry Rozier

Charlotte gets: Kyle Lowry, Nikola Jovic, second-round pick

Maybe Terry Rozier scoring 62 points on 64.5% shooting in two games against Miami this week was an audition. Rozier does a lot of things that could help the Heat. He can score (23.9 points per game), space the floor (40% on 3s) and is an underrated passer and defender. He’s under contract for $50 million over the next two years but, at 29, could be the Heat’s answer at point guard if they already plan on letting Lowry walk as a free agent this summer.

For the Hornets, trading Rozier for Lowry’s expiring would help open up cap space to re-sign Miles Bridges, make another addition in free agency this summer and empower LaMelo Ball to take the next step in running the offense going forward.

Scavenging the Pistons’ Remains

Miami gets: Bojan Bogdanovic, Monte Morris

Detroit gets: Kyle Lowry, first-round pick

This one comes from Sports Illustrated’s Rohan Nadkarni and, while I don’t like it as much as him, I am intrigued. The Heat get Bogdanovic, a floor-spacer and 20-point per game scorer who can be productive at power forward, and a fill-in point guard with Morris. Both are career 39% 3-point shooters and respected vets toiling away for a Pistons team that has lost 21 games in a row. One could argue that the Heat are obligated to save them. The Pistons get Lowry’s expiring and a first-round pick to help with their rebuild.

Heat Acquire Two New Starters

Miami gets: Dorian Finney-Smith, Spencer Dinwiddie

Brooklyn gets: Kyle Lowry, Nikola Jovic, Dru Smith, first-round pick

OK, I kinda like this one. Dorian Finney-Smith is a more productive version of Haywood Highsmith, averaging 11 points on 44.4% shooting on 3s this season while offering the same level of versatile defense. He’d be a plug-and-play starter at power forward. Spencer Dinwiddie can score in bunches, get the offense set and doesn’t turn the ball over much. At 30, he’d be an upgrade over Lowry at this stage of their careers. The Nets would get some cap relief for next summer, a young player and another future draft pick for players who might not factor into their long-term plans.

Some Bad Fake Trade Ideas… Right? (These are bad, right?)

A Trade With An Eastern Conference Rival

Miami gets: Tobias Harris

Philadelphia gets: Kyle Lowry, Caleb Martin, Dru Smith

The 76ers get an upgrade at backup point guard with Lowry, a Philly native, and a high-end rotation wing with Caleb Martin. For the Heat, Tobias Harris offers size and spacing at power forward on an expiring contract. How would Harris respond to being teamed up with Jimmy Butler again?

Heat Add Draft Picks And a Point Guard

Miami gets: Dennis Schroder, Gary Trent Jr., two protected first-round picks

Toronto gets: Tyler Herro, Thomas Bryant

Heat Get Chris Paul and Cap Savings

Miami gets: Chris Paul

Golden State gets: Kyle Lowry, Caleb Martin

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