NBA Trade Rumors: Miami Heat Aggressively Pursuing Amar'e Stoudemire?

Kevin Roberts@BreakingKevinSenior Writer IFebruary 16, 2010

PHOENIX - JANUARY 22:  Amar'e Stoudemire #1 of the Phoenix Suns adjusts his glasses during the NBA game against the Chicago Bulls at US Airways Center on January 22, 2010 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Bulls defeated the Suns 115-104.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

After reports came out suggesting that a deal sending Amar'e Stoudemire to Cleveland wouldn't work because of Shaquille O'Neal or other reasons, it has now been made known by Stoudemire himself, that the star forward would not necessarily be against the trade.

However, he and the Phoenix Suns continue to weigh their options .

Here's how it stands :

Stoudemire could join the Cavaliers, which would give the Phoenix Suns Zydrunas Ilgauskas (who they would probably release, allowing him to return to Cleveland), along with J.J. Hickson, a young guard/forward with some decent potential.

However, Phoenix has been weary of completing a deal, as they'd basically be sending off an All-Star caliber player for an unproven player without the big name.

There are also rumors that the Suns are heavily interested in acquiring a first round pick, something that doesn't appear likely to be coming from Cleveland.

The Cavaliers, on the other hand, have the luxury of chasing other big men who can stretch defenses, such as Washington's Antawn Jamison, and Indiana's Troy Murphy, and have even been rumored to be interested (at least slightly) in Golden State's Corey Maggette.

With this potential deal clearly on hold with less than two full days before the NBA trade deadline, the Miami Heat have now come into play as a strong possibility.

Miami is said to have offered Jermaine O'Neal in quiet talks, but the Suns are unwilling to take on his fat $23 million-dollar deal, and are also interested in getting back a first rounder, something the Heat could/would have to part with, along with possibly Michael Beasley, in place of the aging O'Neal.

This sounds like the most appealing offer for Phoenix, as they unload a disgruntled star, grab a young player with proven ability and elite potential, along with a possible first rounder.

There is still a lot that needs to be worked out in the next couple of days, but Miami or Cleveland appear to be the heavy front-runners to acquire Stoudemire, while San Antonio still sits in a distant third place as a possible suitor.

Of course, there remains the possibility that Stoudemire doesn't get traded, leaving a long-term deal with Phoenix possible, him walking, or him sticking on with the team next season, at around $17 million for his final year.

The Suns probably don't want to tie down to a long-term deal, and they surely don't want to let Stoudemire go for nothing. And above both of those conclusions, they'd prefer not to have to pay him the $17 million and then seem him walk in 2012.

While this trade rumor is still a ways from completely unraveling, there is still plenty of speculation elsewhere to get lost in.


Read on for all the other hot NBA news and rumors :

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Knicks thinking about adding Jordan Hill to package for Tracy McGrady?

Minnesota Timberwolves latest team to take interest in Tyrus Thomas?

Keep up to date with all the NBA trade rumors and final trades at NBA Soup .