ESPN: Pat Riley 'Desperately' Wants 1 More NBA Title amid Kevin Durant-Heat Rumors

Adam WellsJuly 12, 2022

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Pat Riley has been president of the Miami Heat since 1995, but the 77-year-old isn't content having won three titles during his tenure with the organization.

Amid rumors that the Heat are one of Kevin Durant's preferred landing spots, ESPN's Nick Friedell said on Tuesday's Get Up (starts at 1:10 mark) that Riley "desperately" wants to win one more NBA championship before retiring.

When Durant's trade request from the Brooklyn Nets became public June 30, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski added the Heat and Phoenix Suns were among the teams on his wish list.

Things have been quiet on the Durant trade front over the past two weeks. ESPN's Brian Windhorst reported on the July 8 episode of Get Up (starts at 4:20 mark) that teams are not making the types of offers that the Nets are seeking for the 12-time All-Star.

"The market does not want to pay a super premium price for him, because if you trade away all of these top assets on your team to get him, he becomes less valuable to you. And that gulf is why we are in a stalemate right now and could have one for a while," Windhorst said.

The Heat could have a difficult time landing Durant without bringing in at least one other team to help facilitate a deal because of what he is rumored to want the roster to look like.

Per The Athletic's Sam Amick, Durant "only" wants to play for a Heat team with Jimmy Butler, Kyle Lowry and Bam Adebayo. Under that scenario, Tyler Herro would be the best player Miami could send to the Nets.

It would be foolish to underestimate Riley in a scenario when he could potentially add a superstar. He acquired Shaquille O'Neal from the Los Angeles Lakers after the 2003-04 season. The Heat formed the big three in 2010 with LeBron James and Chris Bosh signing on to play with Dwyane Wade.

During Riley's 27 years running the front office, the Heat have never had a long fallow period. They've only missed the playoffs six times and had five losing seasons during that span.

When there is a deal that is available to Riley, historically, he has been able to get it done. If the Nets start to feel pressure to move Durant as the start of the regular season draws closer, it wouldn't be a surprise if Miami finds a way to work out a trade.


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