Despite reported interest from the Knicks, Lakers, and Clippers, one long-time NBA insider claims the Miami Heat may also pursue Kyrie Irving, and could very well be the best fit.
The NBA world is watching with great interest to see how the Irving contract option drama ends. The seven-time All-Star must let the Nets know by June 29 if he plans to opt into the $36 million left on the final year of his contract. However, it is assumed that he will stay only happen if he is given a new long-term pact by the organization.
Related: Nets, Irving negotiations break down with Knicks, Lakers, Clippers gaining interest
Yet, reports over the last week have suggested the Nets and Irving have not gotten any closer to agreeing on a deal. That news was followed by a story suggesting the Knicks, Lakers, and Clippers would pursue the star guard if he and the team agree a sign-and-trade would be best for both sides. But veteran NBA Insider Mark Stein reported on Wednesday that the Miami Heat might factor into the chase as well.
“Miami is believed to have some level of interest in joining the chase for Irving — should the Nets reach the point of actively trying to trade him — and would figure to be a more legitimate landing spot than the teams initially mentioned given the Heat’s various trade assets,” Stein wrote.
What could the Miami Heat offer in a deal for Kyrie Irving?
Stein went on to make the case for why Irving in Miami may not be as unlikely a scenario as it might seem on the surface.
“While it certainly ranks as another strain on the imagination to try and picture Irving finding daily comfort in Pat Riley’s rigid South Beach operation, it’s likewise true that the Heat have never shied away from the starriest of stars or personalities painted as challenging,” Stein explained. “It probably doesn’t hurt that Miami’s face of the franchise Jimmy Butler was quoted as saying the following on ESPN’s First Take in 2017: ‘I’d probably have to go with my favorite player that is not myself, and that’s Kyrie. I love Kyrie’s game man. And he’s a really good dude.”
A lot must happen before trade talks can even occur, but if Miami jumped into the Kyrie Irving trade sweepstakes, what might it take to land the mercurial superstar scorer in South Beach? In the end, the money in such massive deals needs to match for teams to be able to add star talent to their salary caps.
- Brooklyn gets: Bam Adebayo, Tyler Herro, and 2023 and 2026 1st-round pick
- Miami gets: Kyrie Irving
That is why a trade featuring center Bam Adebayo is likely. Miami could trade him straight up for Irving, but obviously, that would not be enough for the Nets in return. However, sending Adebayo, guard Tyler Herro, and the team’s first-round picks in 2023 and 2026 could do it. Miami does not have a pick in the 2025 draft and league rules prohibit trading first-round selections in consecutive years.
- Brooklyn gets: Bam Adebayo, Kyle Lowry, and 2023 and 2026 1st-round pick
- Miami gets: Kyrie Irving and Joe Harris
A second option would also include Adebayo, as well as veteran point guard Kyle Lowry and the same combo of picks going to Brookly for Irving and Joe Harris. This deal would offer more name value and make the Nets a more serious contender next season.
- Brooklyn gets: Kyle Lowry, Tyler Herro, Duncan Robinson, and 2023 and 2026 1st-round pick
- Miami gets: Kyrie Irving, Seth Curry
One last suggestion would see Lowry, Herro, Duncan Robinson, and the picks shipped off to New York for Irving and Seth Curry. While not quite as sexy as Adebayo and Lowry, it is a haul that is solid for the present and future of the Nets.