Miami Heat make Duncan Robinson 'untouchable' in trade talks

According to a recent report, the Miami Heat are not making Duncan Robinson available in trade talks. It's an abrupt about-face from Robinson's status in previous seasons.
Jan 8, 2024; Miami, Florida, USA;  Miami Heat forward Duncan Robinson (55) sets up for a three-point
Jan 8, 2024; Miami, Florida, USA; Miami Heat forward Duncan Robinson (55) sets up for a three-point / Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports

Over the last two years, Duncan Robinson was viewed as an untradeable contract because no team wanted to pay a slumping shooter with defensive inefficiencies an eight-figure salary.

But Robinson’s bounce-back season has changed the way he’s perceived, even by his own team.

According to Yahoo’s NBA reporter Jake Fischer, the Miami Heat have told teams that they are not interested in trading Robinson before the Feb. 8 trade deadline.

“Duncan Robinson is now off the table. You can’t have Duncan,” Fischer told the “Locked On Heat” podcast. “For years, you’d always hear ‘Miami is calling around to offer Duncan.’ He’s untouchable now.”

Robinson, now in the third year of a five-year, $90 million contract, has emerged as a vital piece to Miami’s rotation. He’s averaging career highs in points (13.9), assists (3.2) and steals (0.6) while shooting 41.1% on 3-pointers and taking more 2-pointers than at any point in his career.

When Tyler Herro was sidelined with an ankle sprain earlier in the season, Robinson stepped in as a starter for 17 games and has helped the Heat maintain pole playoff position despite the team ranking near the top of the league in injuries.

It's been quite the turnaround.

Robinson saw his shooting numbers decline in the first year of his contract and, subsequently, his playing time with it. Last regular season, he played in just 42 games after losing his rotation spot to Max Strus and others. After shooting 44.6% and 40.8% from 3 in the two seasons prior, Robinson made just 36.2% of his 3s over the first two years of his new contract. 

That led the Heat, according to reports, to try to trade him to save money under the cap. But with Robinson in a slump, other teams weren’t willing to take on the remainder of his contract.

This appears to have changed, with Robinson returning to his elite, 3-point shooting form combined with his improvements as a driver, passer and defender. 

Robinson is a great fit for any contender, which might be why teams have called about him -- and why the Heat are eager to keep him.