Trevor Ariza Trade Rumors: Heat, Thunder Discussing Deal for Veteran Wing

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistMarch 17, 2021

Portland Trail Blazers forward Trevor Ariza (8) in the first half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2020, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
David Zalubowski/Associated Press

The Miami Heat are reportedly interested in adding a veteran wing player prior to the March 25 trade deadline. 

On Tuesday, Kevin O'Connor of The Ringer reported the Heat have held trade discussions with the Oklahoma City Thunder regarding Trevor Ariza. Miami is one of "numerous playoff teams with interest," and the Thunder hope to land a second-round pick for him. 

Ariza is yet to play this season because of personal reasons.

The veteran has been in the league since the New York Knicks selected him with a second-round pick in the 2004 NBA draft. He has suited up for the Knicks, Orlando Magic, Los Angeles Lakers, Houston Rockets, New Orleans Hornets, Washington Wizards, Phoenix Suns, Portland Trail Blazers and Sacramento Kings.

He split the 2019-20 campaign between the Kings and Trail Blazers while averaging 8.0 points, 4.6 rebounds and 1.3 steals per game.

While the 35-year-old is past his prime, Ariza is still a playoff-tested veteran who can hit from the outside on offense and defend multiple positions on the wing.

It is not difficult to envision him spotting up in the corner and knocking down critical three-pointers for Miami when opposing defenses collapse on Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo. He would also help take some of the defensive pressure away from Butler by guarding playmakers on the wing for stretches.

Ariza likely wouldn't play a major role for the Heat or any other contender, but even small stretches off the bench can help tilt the course of a series.

He would at least be a reliable option with postseason experience who can impact the game in multiple ways when he does return to play this season.