The Miami Heat have long had their eye on Toronto Raptors star Kyle Lowry, according to Bleacher Report‘s Jake Fischer, and the 34-year-old veteran will become a free agent after the regular season ends.
On February 11, rumors that this would be Lowry’s final year in Toronto went into overdrive after Sports Illustrated’s AllRaptors.com reporter Aaron Rose said that multiple sources revealed to him that the six-time All-Star’s home in North York is up for sale. According to Rose, Lowry’s home, which was featured in a 2017 episode of Open Gym, was listed on Monday evening for $5.3 million.
However, neither Lowry, who’s in the final year of his $31 million contract extension, nor anyone from the Raptors organization, has officially announced that he’s on his way out. Before the 2020-2021 season started, Raptors president Masai Ujiri said of Lowry:
“That boy is grand, man. I don’t want to push his retirement. I will say this of Kyle, he’s been incredibly respectful to the organization, and we will have that same incredible respect to Kyle anytime. Every day. There’s no doubt about that.”
Toronto currently sits in eighth place in the Eastern Conference with a less than stellar 11-13 record. The Heat are two spots below them with a 10-14 record but are actively looking to add some reliable star power to their roster.
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While Lowry putting his house up for sale does not mean that he’s definitely going to get traded, but it’s raising eyebrows across the league that it’s a sign he’s ready to leave. Due to COVID-19 regulations, Toronto’s home base for this NBA season was moved to Tampa, so Lowry hasn’t been able to spend time at his home anyways.
The expensive house is listed by real estate agent Lisa McLaughlin of Royal LePage, who confirmed to Narcity over the phone that the house was owned by KL7 Inc., an Ontario company whose named after Lowry’s initials and jersey number.
Why Lowry’s Time May Finally Be Up in Toronto
Lowry has long been the main hero of the Toronto Raptors. He’s been with the team since the 2012-2013 season, and despite his age, Lowry continues to be a force of production on the court.
While the Heat doesn’t have any draft picks to trade, “they could move on him at the trade deadline,” according to Heat Nation, “and match salaries to add him to their roster spot for a playoff run.”
As for what’s causing Lowry to split from Toronto, an Eastern Conference coach believes the Raptors want to build up their young talent and possibly shift the focus to 26-year-old guard Fred VanVleet, whom Lowry considers to be his “little bro.”
“Young guys can’t blossom until you move on from Lowry because the pecking order is still set from the top,” one Eastern Conference coach told Bleacher Report. “If you’re trying to reshape your roster, one thing you need to avoid is duplication.”
The Raptors have unsuccessfully tried multiple times before to trade Lowry, Clutch Points reported, so fans will have to wait and see what happens by the trade deadline.
The Heat Would Have to Trade Up Big Talent to Obtain Lowry
Lowry will not come cheap, nor do the Heat appear willing to give up their top young talent. Fischer believes that Miami would have to trade either Duncan Robinson or Tyler Herro if they’re serious about obtaining Lowry.
“The Heat have never appeared keen to move either,” league sources told Bleacher Report, but they also don’t want to waste the All-Star combination that is Bam Adebayo and a Jimmy Butler in his prime.
“You know with Pat Riley, nothing’s off the table,” one rival executive said.