The young “boy wonder” is believed to be one of the most promising up-and-comers in the league, and Herro’s ceiling of expectations was abnormally high following his stellar rookie season. So, when the 21-year-old guard’s sophomore season didn’t live up to the hype, Herro went from being praised by fans to getting dubbed as overrated.
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During his rookie season, Herro averaged 13.5 points, 4.1 assists, and 2.2 rebounds per game while shooting 38.9% from deep. Last year, he averaged 15.1 points, five rebounds, and 3.4 assists per game, but his three-point average fell to 36%.
Herro didn’t let the sophomore slump affect his life off the court, and his star power seemed to only exponentially grow with brand deals and endorsements — accolades that didn’t sit well with his detractors. However, on media day, Herro’s coaches and teammates stood up for the Kentucky alum.
Heat star Bam Adebayo said of Herro, “He sees a lot of the doubt and a lot of the hate and he wants to prove people wrong. He’s going into the season with a bigger chip on his shoulder.”
Head coach Erik Spoelstra said it’s wrong to even consider Herro’s second year in the NBA as a slump:
[He’s] had a great offseason, a springboard from last season. Everything his first year was roses and compliments and easy sailing. Everything he did was considered great. If you look at last year from a statistical standpoint, his year was better in many regards. One of the keys with a young player is to handle some adversity and forge ahead and learning the league and learning how to impact winning.
Herro Gained 10 Pounds of Muscle During the Offseason
Herro made it his goal this summer to gain weight, to pack on around 10 pounds of muscle before the 2021-22 NBA season started.
During the offseason, Herro started working out with trainer Drew Hanlen, and he’s already looking more jacked. “Tyler is committed to that process,” Spoelstra said on Monday. “It’s notable he added 10 plus pounds of muscle. We sat down and talked to him about that and he was on board with that. That will help him with durability and physicality defensively and help him be able to handle contact offensively.”
Earlier this month, the Heat exercised the $5.7 million fourth-year option on Herro’s rookie-scale contract for the 2022-23 season. Herro is looking to bounce back in his third year in the NBA, successful enough to make his sophomore slump nothing more than a distant memory.
Herro Will Be Eligible for a Massive Pay Raise In 2 Years
After the 2022-23 season, depending on his performance, Herro will be eligible for a massive pay raise. Adebayo was on a similar rookie contract deal before receiving a five-year, $163 extension from the Heat last year.
The former 13th overall pick was the first player from the 2019 NBA Draft class to have his option picked up. If the Heat chose not to pick up the 6-foot-5 guard’s option, Herro would’ve become a free agent after the close of the 2021-22 NBA season.
Herro’s job security is not in question, as Heat president Pat Riley believes him to be a core player of the Heat’s roster.