Q: Ira, the Heat could have paid nothing for Jerami Grant and let him go. Imagine him with Jimmy Butler and Kyle Lowry. -Andy.
A: Well, there’s no need to imagine anything like that, with Jerami Grant leaving for the Portland Trail Blazers for nothing more than cap space, a future first-round pick and a second tower showcase. Yes, I thought Jerami would have been a quality addition to the Heat’s starting lineup alongside Jimmy Butler and Kyle Lowry. But with Detroit prioritizing cap space, the Heat lacked the resources to play the Pistons’ game. They neither had the type of trade exception the Blazers held for CJ McCollum, nor, obviously, the necessary cap space. And despite all the speculation, it probably wasn’t at the level of the Heat’s willingness to potentially part ways with Tyler Herro. Yes, the Heat could have used a veteran scoring wing, but Detroit obviously preferred the space to be spent as they saw fit in the future, rather than accepting Duncan Robinson’s contract and the remaining four years. The deal also makes it much more likely, as if it wasn’t already the case, that Damian Lillard will continue to play with the Trail Blazers. So two players down and free agency for the Heat.
Q: Hi Ira. With the news that Bradley Beal will turn down his player option and become an unrestricted free agent, in terms of the salary cap, how restricted are the Heat and what possible steps can they take to fit into the contract of Bradley? – Victor, Miramar.
A: Everything points to the move coming before Bradley Beal is back on a max deal with the Wizards. Had Bradley prioritized a trade, it would have left a lot more options open had he delayed such a move. Not nearly the same optimism with this one as when Jimmy Butler left Philadelphia with his signing and trade to the Heat in the 2019 offseason.
Q: If Tyler Herro is traded and the Miami Heat don’t get a goalscoring wing in return, is there a possibility for Victor Oladipo to have a starting role to give him every chance to get closer from his All-Star days? – Christopher, Vancouver.
A: If Tyler Herro is dealt, it would be for a wing in return. Otherwise, you are creating a void to fill another (perhaps in the rotation of power). Victor Oladipo has barely shown enough in his return to this point for any kind of considerable commitment.