Heat Trade Rumors: Dion Waiters Has Been on Trade Block 'Since Last Christmas'

Megan ArmstrongAnalyst IIOctober 21, 2019

CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA - OCTOBER 09: Dion Waiters #11 of the Miami Heat brings the ball up the court against the Charlotte Hornets during their game at Spectrum Center on October 09, 2019 in Charlotte, North Carolina. 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 Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

The Miami Heat suspended guard Dion Waiters for their season opener Wednesday against the Memphis Grizzlies for conduct detrimental to the team as the club reportedly looks to trade him.

In fact, an anonymous NBA general manager told Heavy.com's Sean Deveney: "They've been trying to trade him since last Christmas. No one was trying to take him on then. And after this kind of thing [suspension], it would be really hard to take him on now. He has had just kind of junk attached to him just about his whole career."

The Heat announced Waiters' one-game suspension Friday night, and The Athletic's Shandel Richardson later tweeted: "[Head coach] Erik Spoelstra will offer no further comment on Dion Waiters. Heat sticking with statement from [team president] Pat Riley."

Riley stated: "There were a number of unacceptable incidents this week, culminating with his unprofessional conduct on the bench last night. As a consequence, I feel we had to suspend him."

Waiters also had some questionable Instagram activity (warning: NSFW):

Brendan Tobin @Brendan_Tobin

Dion saying Spo only won because of LeBron & Wade, laughing at idea of Tyler Herro being better than him and ‘liking’ comments about waiving/trading him. HAPPY NBA SEASON!!!!! (Via @HeatvsHaters IG) https://t.co/PAwF2Bc2am

The Miami Herald's Anthony Chiang reported the following Sunday:

"According to a source, there was a disagreement between Waiters and Spoelstra on the bench during Friday's preseason finale against the Rockets. Waiters finished with two points, two rebounds and one assist in 10 minutes as a reserve against Houston, with nine players logging more minutes than him in the game.

Waiters played off the bench in each of the four preseason games he appeared in, but he has made it clear that he wants to be a starter. Spoelstra has remained non-committal about that, and he started guards Tyler Herro and Kendrick Nunn and forward Duncan Robinson ahead of Waiters this preseason."

Waiters signed a four-year, $52 million extension with the Heat in July 2017. Since then, the 27-year-old has averaged 12.9 points, 2.6 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game across 74 games (58 starts). Last season, he tallied a career-low 25.9 minutes per game.

In 2013, Waiters was accused of fighting then-teammate Kyrie Irving as a member of the Cleveland Cavaliers, per Deveney. The 2012 fourth overall pick was absent from subsequent games, while Irving had a black eye and a broken nose, though Waiters denied his involvement.

The Heat will open their regular season without Waiters and suspended forward James Johnson.

Former Hawks GM turned NBA TV and Radio Analyst, Wes Wilcox, joins “The Full 48 with Howard Beck” to discuss the Portland Trail Blazers as a legit contender, the Clippers as the best roster construction in the league, his picks for the play-offs, and why LeBron is still the best player in the NBA.