With the March 25 deadline looming, Miami Heat, who’ve been linked to at least 12 free agent options over the past few weeks, need to make move real soon if they’re looking to lock up a solid fourth.
On March 16, Bleacher Report proposed a trade that would bring the Heat not one, but two Houston Rockets players, Victor Oladipo and P.J. Tucker. However, the outlet’s proposed price that Miami would have to pay in order to obtain the 28-year-old guard and 35-year-old power forward is ridiculously steep.
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In exchange for Oladipo and Tucker, Bleacher Report has the Heat giving the Rockets Kendrick Nunn, Precious Achiuwa, Andre Iguodala, Meyers Leonard, and their 2025 first-round pick.
It’s hard to imagine that Miami would even entertain such an insane trade, especially because Oladipo, who becomes a free agent at the end of the season, could get acquired over the summer without Miami having to give up any of their top young talent or first-round draft picks.
It would also be in the Heat’s favor to wait for the Rockets to buyout Tucker’s $8 million contract before making a move for the 6-foot-5 veteran forward.
The Houston Rockets Have Lost Their Last 16 Games & John Wall Needs Surgery
As of March 16, the Rockets are second to last in the Western Conference with an 11-26 record. With newly acquired star John Wall heading for knee surgery sometime this season, it’s likely Houston is ready to start focusing on next season.
With Wall out, Oladipo is the team’s biggest star and best trade piece. If Houston wants to go into next season with an all-new slate, it makes even more sense for the Rockets to unload him before the deadline to get some fresh talent in return. If they wait, Houston may lose Oladipo for nothing.
As for what prospective buyers like the Heat should be willing to offer to obtain Oladipo, FanSided’s Michael Saenz made a solid point. He wrote, “The Rockets can’t be too picky when it comes to their asking price… Considering he was one of the big pieces of the James Harden deal, the Rockets can’t afford to lose him for nothing… It’ll be interesting to see what their asking price is for Oladipo at the deadline and how it evolves as it grows closer and closer.”
Oladipo Already Has Roots in Miami
If Miami isn’t able to acquire Oladipo before the deadline, all hope is not lost. The Philadelphia Inquirer‘s Keith Pompey reported on February 28, “Some around the league think Victor Oladipo could be a candidate to sign a contract with the Miami Heat during the upcoming free-agency period,” and that “Houston would probably want some young talent or draft picks in return for Oladipo,” for which the Heat is flush.
According to Miami Herald’s Barry Jackson, the Heat is where Oladipo has wanted to be all along. The Indiana alum has roots in South Beach. He’s part-owner of a gym in Miami where he rehabbed throughout the Orlando bubble, and considered Heat legend Dwyane Wade as both a mentor and friend.