The Miami Heat are set to run it back with nearly the exact same roster that brought them within one game of reaching the Eastern Conference Finals last season, which seems somewhat underwhelming considering they were heavily linked to possibly landing Kevin Durant or Donovan Mitchell all summer.
In exchange for Gordon, who’s the Rockets’ highest-paid player and is halfway through his four-year, $75.5 million contract, the Heat would send over sharpshooter Duncan Robinson and an unprotected 2023 first-round pick.
“If anyone’s willing to give up a first-round pick for Eric Gordon, who’ll be 34 in December, the rebuilding Houston Rockets will have to think about taking the deal,” Bailey wrote on Monday, September 19. “ He hasn’t had an above-average box plus/minus since 2017-18, and his three-point efficiency has been sporadic over the last few years.”
Therefore, Houston getting a first-round pick in exchange for Gordon is likely the best offer they will get, “even if it means taking on the potentially dubious contract of Duncan Robinson, who’s owed $19.9 million in 2025-26. ”
Gordon, the former No. 7 overall pick form the 2008 NBA Draft, averaged 13.4 points, 2.0 rebounds, and 2.7 assists per game last season while shooting 47.5% on field goals.
Gordon Would Be a ‘Short-Term’ Fix for the Heat
In addition to unloading Robinson’s five-year, $90 million contract, the Heat would be obtaining a veteran talent that could also help fill the gaping hole on defense left behind by power forward P.J. Tucker, who signed with the Philadelphia 76ers this offseason.
“[He’s] a bit of a flier for the Miami Heat, who’d surely be hoping for Gordon to replicate the 41.2 three-point percentage he put up last season,” Bailey wrote. “ If he did, it’s not hard to see how he raises the short-term ceiling a bit more than Robinson, whose own outside shooting has steadily slid since 2019-20. Gordon can do a lot of the same off-ball, catch-and-shoot stuff as Robinson, but he’s a sturdier defender and is more capable as a creator.”
Robinson, 28, put up career-low numbers last season, averaging 10.9 points per game while shooting 40% from the field goal and 37% from beyond the arc before ultimately getting benched in the playoffs. While undrafted forward out of Michigan could turn things around this season, the Heat may not have the time to take that gamble with two of their biggest stars aging up.
Heat wing Jimmy Bulter turned 33 last week while the team’s starting point guard, Kyle Lowry, will turn 37 in March. If Miami is looking to capitalize while Butler’s still in his prime, now is the time to go for it.
The Heat Have a Strong Interest in Gordon
While the Heat have been linked to Gordon since 2019, this past July, The Athletic‘s Kelly Iko reported that Gordon was almost traded on the night of the 2022 NBA Draft and that Miami was in the mix to land “what looks like a standard championship-hopeful rental.”
“Gordon, the subject of repeated interest around the league, was close to being traded on draft night, with the Philadelphia 76ers presumed to be the landing spot before talks ultimately fell apart,” Iko wrote. “But in addition to the 76ers, the Rockets received offers from no less than six teams before the draft, including the Miami Heat, Milwaukee Bucks and Phoenix Suns, who offered packages including first-round picks. Houston turned all of those down.”
While the Rockets didn’t accept any of the offers, “Given the ho-hum nature of this summer’s free-agent dealings, there’s a possibility that a team that strikes out in free agency circles back with an improved offer for Gordon,” Iko noted. “Houston may re-evaluate offers around the upcoming trade deadline.”