It’s not yet known whether the Toronto Raptors will pull off a Kyle Lowry trade ahead of the March 25 deadline. Previous suggestions were that something could come to fruition. However, more-recent reports conclude that a trade is unlikely.
What we do know is that the Miami Heat are expected to be active ahead of the NBA trade deadline. The defending Eastern Conference champions have struggled to a 20-18 start to the season. Front office head Pat Riley and Co. are now looking to use their limited resources to add to the team’s core group. That could potentially include a move for Kyle Lowry.
Read More: 4 ideal Kyle Lowry trade scenarios
Miami Heat have offered up three players in a Kyle Lowry trade
“Miami expressed interest in acquiring Raptors six-time All-Star point guard Kyle Lowry and Goran Dragic, Kelly Olynyk and Kendrick Nunn were discussed,” Michael Scotto of Hoops Hype reported recently.
In order for this to happen, Miami would have to pick up the $19.4 million option on Dragic’s contract for next season. At the very least, it would give the Toronto Raptors a stopgap option in the backcourt. Even then, this hypothetical trade likely wouldn’t be enough for Toronto to pull the trigger.
Kelly Olynyk has been among the worst regular starters in the NBA this season. Nunn would be the centerpiece heading back to Canada.
An All-Rookie performer last season, the former undrafted free agent is averaging 14.0 points, 3.3 rebounds and 2.8 assists on 36% shooting from distance. He would make sense for Toronto as a partner with Fred VanVleet and Normal Powell in the backcourt.
Despite his advanced age of 34 and status as an impending free agent, it stands to reason Toronto could acquire more in a Kyle Lowry trade ahead of the deadline. The franchise stalwart and six-time All-Star continues to play high-level basketball. He’s averaging 18.0 points, 5.5 rebounds and 7.2 assists on a resounding 40% shooting from three-point range on the season.
Why a Kyle Lowry trade makes sense for the Heat, Raptors
A deal under different parameters would make sense for both teams. Lowry is a pending free agent and might not return to Toronto next season.
In the midst of a down season in which they are battling for a bottom-end playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, the Raptors might want to get something for him rather than letting the longtime guard walk for nothing during the summer.
It’s also important to note that Fred VanVleet is the face of the team’s backcourt moving forward. He can man the point guard position to perfection. Add in the presence of an impressive Norman Powell at the two-guard spot, and it makes little sense for Toronto to retain Lowry beyond this season.
As for Miami, the idea would be to move stud youngster Tyler Herro to his more natural off-ball position with Lowry taking over the point. Jimmy Butler would take over out on the wing in this scenario, too. The Heat might have a need at power forward, but that’s something they could address on the buyout market.
Even if this hypothetical Kyle Lowry trade didn’t end up panning out for Miami, it would then be in position to be primetime players once free agency gets going during the summer. That could include a long-anticipated marriage with Victor Oladipo. It’s certainly something to consider ahead of the NBA trade deadline.