Miami is Lillard’s preferred destination, with many still expecting he’ll eventually make his way to South Beach in the coming weeks. The Heat will want to ensure they retain Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo, meaning they’ll probably need a third team to get a deal done.
The Heat have a number of proven role players who could be of interest to contending teams, including the Warriors who may wish to further their win-now approach. Let’s have a look at how a trade could play out between the three teams.
* This trade couldn’t be completed until after October 4
Miami get their man while retaining Butler and Adebayo, immediately placing themselves among the top-tier of Eastern Conference contenders. They do have to take on Nurkic’s contract, but he’d be a high-end backup big albeit an overpaid one.
Moving four players is a huge shift, but it’s something they may have to do should they want their hands on Lillard. They give up two future first-round picks in this deal, with haggling sure to be done on both sides.
Lowry will probably be bought out immediately, though like Paul in the previous trade, he could be helpful for Henderson’s development. Portland may not be thrilled with Herro but he should put up good numbers and remain a valuable asset they can move in the future.
Moody, Podziemski and Jacquez Jr. only add to the franchise’s plethora of young talent that would be headed by Henderson and Shaedon Sharpe. The picks are far enough into the future for the franchise to be optimistic in them being within the lottery.
Martin proved a revelation in the 2023 playoffs, averaging over 30 minutes, nearly 13 points and over five rebounds as the Heat surprised everyone to advance to the NBA Finals. He’ll probably be more impactful than Moody and Podziemski in the short term, plus Golden State still hold onto their brightest young talent in Kuminga.