The Miami Heat were one of the biggest winners of the first day of free agency. They added a top-notch, versatile defender in P.J. Tucker, managed to keep Duncan Robinson, extended Jimmy Butler's contract, and completed a sign-and-trade for Kyle Lowry.
Lowry was one of the most sought-after players during the trade deadline and was expected to draw plenty of interest in free agency as well.
Then again, it seems like Pat Riley and the Miami Heat may have hurdled through a couple of those tampering regulations, as the deal was done just a couple of minutes after the 'official' start of free agency.
Nonetheless, it seems like Stephen A. Smith doesn't believe that Lowry will be that big of a factor in South Beach, at least come playoff time:
"When we last saw you (Miami Heat), what happened to you? You got swept by the Milwaukee Bucks. That’s (Kyle Lowry’s trade to Heat) not going to be the difference… This dude is a special player… but in Miami, as they’re presently constructed, I don’t see him making that big of a deal," Smith said on ESPN's The Jump, as quoted by Essentially Sports.
Well, that's definitely an opinion. We're talking about one of the best point guards in the Eastern Conference over the past 6 years or so, a guy with championship experience and that has been on a playoff team more often than not.
Lowry averaged 17.2 points, 5.4 rebounds, 7.3 assists, 1.0 steals, and 2.8 three-pointers per game on 43% shooting and 39% from beyond the arc, and he'll give the Heat yet another 3-and-D weapon.
On the downside, committing that much money on a 34-year-old player who's coming off an injury-riddled season could be a bit of a concern. But if he stays healthy, he's definitely going to be a huge factor.