Hypothetical In-Season Trades for the Miami Heat in 2012-13
Pat Riley is not known for making blockbuster trades. He prefers to make his mark wheeling and dealing through free agency (See James, LeBron; Bosh, Chris).
The chances of Riley pulling the trigger on a major deal are slim to none.
The last time the Miami Heat made an in-season trade was in January 2010, when Chris Quinn, a 2012 second-round pick and cash were sent to the New Jersey Nets for a 2010 top-50 protected second-round pick.
Still, it’s still fun throw out hypothetical scenarios.
The following are three possibilities Riley could consider should he feel the need to mix up his roster during the year.
Mike Miller to the Cavaliers for Orlando’s 2013 Second-Round Pick
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With Ray Allen, Mike Miller, Rashard Lewis and James Jones, Miami has plenty of long-range shooters.
The best one to get rid of would be Miller, who makes the most money and is the most injury prone.
The Cleveland Cavaliers, meanwhile, are in need of a three-point specialist now that Anthony Parker retired. Reigning Rookie of the Year Kyrie Irving and recently drafted Dion Waiters are both slashers that need shooters to help space the floor.
With this trade, Cleveland gets its shooter and Miami dumps unnecessary salary while picking up a draft pick that will probably be in the top five of the second round.
Although that’s not an awesome pick, the Heat can use it to either draft a specialist to fill a hole or invest in a long-term project.
Shane Battier, Mike Miller and Mario Chalmers to the Nuggets for JaVale McGee
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The Nuggets just signed JaVale McGee through 2016, but they can afford to give him up. They currently have McGee, Timofey Mozgov, Kenneth Faried and Kosta Koufas.
They are more in need of outside shooting. The only deep threat they have is Danilo Gallinari, while the rest of the roster is filled with big men and athletes.
Miller would supplant the need of a shooter, Chalmers gives them young potential talent for the future and Battier is the veteran presence that could turn this team from an exciting watch to a legitimate playoff contender.
On the Heat's side, where they lose one starter, they gain a huge upgrade on another.
JaVale McGee fits in perfectly with the Heat’s athletic defense and would be the best rim protector Miami has seen since Alonzo Mourning.
He’s still raw offensively, but he’s getting close to ready.
Most importantly, he would allow Bosh and James to play their natural positions, where they can be more effective.
Chris Bosh to the Suns for Marcin Gortat, Luis Scola and Michael Beasley
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With this move, Miami becomes more of a team and less of a trio surrounded by patched-in pieces.
Marcin Gortat and Luis Scola are two of the most underrated players in the league.
Scola is a crafty veteran that can score very efficiently in the post, adding an element to the Heat’s offense. He can also knock down the mid-range jumper, so he doesn’t stuff up room for Dwyane Wade and James to slash.
Gortat is a highly underrated defender; he’s averaged 1.9 blocks per 36 minutes for his career. His career 14.1 points per 36 minutes on 55.5 percent shooting isn’t too shabby, either.
And Michael Beasley may be a knucklehead, but he’d be a great scoring option off the bench. You play him just enough to come in and provide a spark, but not long enough to unleash his insanity.
Phoenix, on the other hand, lands a franchise player after just losing Steve Nash. Every team wants one to compile victories and sell tickets, and Bosh would help do just that.
Dwyane Wade to the Clippers for Chris Paul
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Chris Paul has made it known that he wants to be part of a Big Three since making his famous toast during Carmelo Anthony’s wedding. He’s part of a Big Two right now with Blake Griffin, but it’s pretty clear he’s not thrilled about staying with the Los Angeles Clippers much longer.
Rather than enthusiastically proclaim he can’t wait to sign a long-term deal with Los Angeles, he’s kept the fact that he’s a free agent next summer very quiet.
If the Heat can nab him before the offseason, he would be much more likely to re-sign for a big deal.
The only way to do that is trade away one of the Big Three, and the piece that makes the most sense to move is Wade.
You can’t trade LeBron, because he’s the best player in the world. And the Clippers wouldn’t trade Paul for Bosh. They already have a superstar power forward in Griffin.
Truth be told, I don’t know if they would trade Paul for Wade, either, but they would have to strongly consider it. They would be guaranteed three more years of a superstar with Wade’s contract than with Paul’s.
Think how much better a fit Paul would be for LeBron than Wade is. He’s younger, more durable, a better outside shooter, a better defender and could get LeBron and everyone else easier buckets.
It’s well worth a shot.