Heat Trade Rumors: Miami 'Dangling' Meyers Leonard, More for LaMarcus Aldridge

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistMarch 14, 2021

San Antonio Spurs center LaMarcus Aldridge (12) during an NBA basketball game against the Denver Nuggets in San Antonio, Friday, Jan. 29, 2021. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
Eric Gay/Associated Press

The Miami Heat are reportedly interested in a trade for LaMarcus Aldridge and have "dangled" a package of veterans that includes Meyers Leonard, Avery Bradley and Maurice Harkless, according to Michael Scotto of Hoops Hype.

These players can help match salaries with Aldridge's $24 million owed in 2020-21 while also allowing for flexibility going forward. Harkless has an expiring contract while Leonard and Bradley have team options for 2021-22.

Miami would also likely add draft-pick compensation and a young player like Chris Silva or KZ Okpala in order to complete a deal, per Scotto.

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski previously reported Aldridge will not return to the San Antonio Spurs, and the team hopes to trade him to avoid a buyout.

Aldridge has struggled this season with averages of 13.7 points and 4.5 rebounds per game, both his lowest since at least his rookie year.

San Antonio is trying to move forward with a younger roster and will hope to get some value in return for the 35-year-old before he hits free agency in the offseason.

The seven-time All-Star should still be able to help a contender considering his production throughout his career. Just one year ago, Aldridge averaged 18.9 points, 7.4 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game, making 38.9 percent of his shots from three-point range.

It could be a valuable addition for Miami, which needs added depth in the post beyond Bam Adebayo and Kelly Olynyk. 

Last year's NBA finalists have struggled offensively this year while ranking just 25th in efficiency, but adding a proven interior scorer could help turn things around on that end of the court.

Leonard is currently out for the year with a shoulder injury and made headlines last week after saying an anti-Semitic slur in an online video. He was suspended from team activities for a week and was fined $50,000.