Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images
The Miami Heat are still in pursuit of Kevin Durant and Donovan Mitchell, but they reportedly have a backup plan in place.
Sean Deveney of Heavy spoke to an executive who believes acquiring Gordon Hayward from the Charlotte Hornets is Miami’s “Plan B.”
“If you want to give up [Tyler] Herro before you pay him and you want to move [Duncan] Robinson, you would have to add a pick, but those two guys and Omer [Yurtseven], that might be enough to get Hayward if the Hornets decide to reconfigure,” the executive said. “It’s a short-term move for Miami, but they need to make their move now. You can play him at the 3 and go big or go small at the 4. He’s a guy they’ve had interest in before.”
The Hornets were reportedly exploring a trade of Hayward ahead of the 2022 NBA draft but did not make a move. It’s unclear how motivated the Hornets are to make a move now, especially given the uncertain NBA future of Miles Bridges, who is currently facing domestic violence and child abuse charges.
Regardless, it’s almost a lock that Herro would not be involved in any trade for Hayward, barring some previously unknown falling out with the organization. Herro is a 22-year-old coming off winning Sixth Man of the Year; Hayward is a full decade older and hasn’t played more than 72 games in a season since 2019.
Even if the Heat add Robinson’s contract to the mix, there’s no world in which moving Herro in a deal for Hayward makes sense. Robinson’s five-year, $90 million contract has proved to be a misfire from Miami’s perspective, but Hayward’s locked in for $61.6 million over the next two years. Robinson’s guaranteed only $64.4 million over the next four seasons.
A more logical Hayward-to-Miami deal could be consummated after Jan. 15, when the Heat could package Victor Oladipo, Robinson and a draft pick.