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Heat Rumors: Kevin Durant, Donovan Mitchell Trades Have Not 'Gotten Much Traction'

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVJuly 21, 2022

Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images

The Miami Heat aren't having much luck in their pursuit of trades for Kevin Durant or Donovan Mitchell, according to ESPN's Zach Lowe.

Lowe reported the Heat "so far have not gotten much traction on either front" but continue to pursue a deal.

Lowe explained how Miami's predicament is partially a reflection of Tyler Herro, whom he described as "perhaps the most polarizing high-wattage player in the NBA."

The Heat likely could execute a major trade if they included Bam Adebayo, though that would require Brooklyn also moving Ben Simmons elsewhere as part of a Durant deal. Adebayo is also a critical part of the Heat's present and future.

That leaves Herro as the Heat's next best asset, and the 22-year-old might be too much of a wild card to be the cornerstone of a blockbuster swap.

The 6'5" guard has averaged 16.7 points, 4.7 rebounds and 3.2 assists through his first three years. He's also a 38.5 percent three-point shooter.

Herro has shown steady improvement and averaged a personal-best 20.7 points per game in 2021-22. Perhaps he has yet another level to reach and can become a perennial All-Star.

His performance in the playoffs is one reason for concern, though. During Miami's run to the 2022 Eastern Conference Finals, he shot 22.9 percent from beyond the arc. One year earlier, he went 12-of-38 from the field as the team got swept in the first round.

Herro's contract situation doesn't help matters. He's due to be a restricted free agent in 2023, and it's tough to gauge what kind of deal will represent solid value. If he has a big 2022-23 season, is that enough to warrant a max contract?

The Nets and Jazz may want to avoid that headache even if they are offered multiple first-rounders by Miami.

"If Miami pulls off a superstar trade, it's going to be in part because the team on the other end is higher on Herro than consensus," Lowe wrote.

Unless they can pull a third team into the trade or make this a four-team affair, there simply might not be a path for the Heat to land Durant or Mitchell this offseason.

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