Lonzo Ball to Miami: Heat Interested in Pelicans Star, per Report

Lonzo Ball trade

Getty Lonzo Ball #2 of the New Orleans Pelicans shoots from beyond the three point line during the second half against the Toronto Raptors at Amalie Arena on December 23, 2020.

Following the Heat‘s devastating overtime loss to the Golden State Warriors, a game in which Miami blew a 19-point lead during a fourth-quarter collapse, trade rumors surrounding the franchise are in overdrive.

While it seems like the Heat are linked to almost every possible free agent on the market, on February 18, a new report revealed a member of the team’s front office has their eye on the NBA’s 2017 No. 2 overall pick, Lonzo Ball.

Five Reasons Sports Network’s Greg Sylvander tweeted on Thursday, I know one member of the Heat FO that has expressed interest in the idea of pursuing Lonzo Ball. Can you guess who?” Sylvander shared this report by retweeting Ball’s recent stat line, “Lonzo Ball is up to 38.1% from 3 on 7+ attempts per game and 55.4% TS.”

GettyJimmy Butler #22 of the Miami Heat defends Lonzo Ball #2 of the New Orleans Pelicans during the second quarter at American Airlines Arena on December 25, 2020 in Miami, Florida.

Unlike the other players the Heat are reportedly pursuing, Ball is under the age of 30. The 23-year-old point guard is also on a serious hot streak, not sitting out until he’s bought out or traded. On Thursday, Ball was named by Yahoo! Sports as one of the NBA’s “best 3-point shooters.” And after a poor showing last season, he’s thriving in 2021.

While the Heat desperately need a big forward to complement All-Star Bam Adebayo, with their 11-17 record, Miami will need more than just one new key player added to the roster. The Heat need a full shake-up. With veteran Goran Dragic out, sidelined with an injury over two weeks ago, the Heat could use a young and exciting guard to reinvigorate the team.

It’s not clear what Miami would have to give up to obtain Ball, who’s an unrestricted free agent after the Pelicans failed to reach an extension agreement before the 2020-2021 season started. ESPN‘s Bobby Marks stated in December, “If Ball stays healthy and plays at a high level this season, a new contract should start in the $16-18 million range next offseason.”

What About the Heat’s Sharpshooter Duncan Robinson?

Over the Pelicans’ last 12 matchups, Ball has shot 45.8% from beyond the line and attempted eight long balls each game. While the Heat have their star three-point shooter in Duncan Robinson, he has not been delivering the goods this season.

While Robinson, 26, is still a fantastic shooter, nailing 39.3% of his shots, which is above the league average, he is not replicating his performance from last season. During the 2019-2020 season, during which the Heat came within two games of winning the NBA Finals, Robinson was hitting 44.6% from beyond the line with 8.3 attempts per game.

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Most of the Heat’s Trade Rumors Involve Obtaining a Power Forward

Blake Griffin trade

GettyBlake Griffin #23 of the Detroit Pistons shoots the ball in warmups prior to the Pistons home opener against the Cleveland Cavaliers at Little Caesars Arena on December 26, 2020 in Detroit.

Name an available forward becoming available, and there’s likely a report linking them to the Heat, as the franchise is trying to avoid the embarrassment that is making it to the NBA Finals and then missing out on the playoffs entirely the following season.

While the Heat missed out on obtaining James Harden and Giannis Antetokounmpo. and Wizards All-Star Bradley Beal announced he wants to remain in Washington, Miami still has their eye on more than a few players around the league.

Big names tossed around thus far include the following players:

Detroit Pistons Blake Griffin

Sacramento Kings Nemanja Bjelica

San Antonio Spurs Rudy Gay

Cleveland Cavaliers Andre Drummond

Toronto Raptors Kyle Lowry

READ NEXT: Miami’s Missing Link: Heat Nearly ‘Locked In’ Clippers Power Forward

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