Coming off a Conference Finals appearance, the Miami Heat have to be feeling pretty good about where they stand. With Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo, and a slew of other talented and hard-working vets, the Heat have everything they need (at least, on paper) to run the East for years to come.
But Pat Riley has never been one to slow down. In fact, his ambitions have no ceiling. It's why the Heat are constantly looking to improve, despite how good they already are. It's also why the team has its eyes set on superstar swingman Kevin Durant, whose relationship with the Nets has turned sour.
In a recent update on the KD sweepstakes, Anthony Chiang of the Miami Herald revealed all the teams that may have a chance to bring him in:
"The Heat have far more interest in acquiring Durant than Irving, according to a source close to the situation. Acquiring Irving comes with a risk because his availability has become a major issue, as he played in just 20 regular-season games in 2019-20 in part because of a shoulder injury, 54 regular-season games in 2020-21 that included absences because of personal reasons and 29 regular-season games last season because of his unwillingness to get vaccinated against COVID-19 while playing in a city that had a vaccine mandate in place. There would be significant interest from numerous teams, including the Heat, in adding Durant if he were to become available. Durant, who turns 34 in September, is still considered to be among the league’s top players even after undergoing surgery to repair a ruptured Achilles tendon in 2019.”
In the wake of Kyrie's decision to opt into his deal, it seems unlikely the Nets will make any move involving Durant at this time. Still, he would be a game-changer for Miami. Immediately after his arrival, the team would be considered among the favorites to win the title. Still, one has to wonder what Miami would have to give up to acquire Durant in the first place.
In one suggested swap, the Heat could offer a package of Kyle Lowry, Tyler Herro, Duncan Robinson, and five future first-round picks for Durant. Whether or not the Heat would consider trading Bam or Butler is debatable, but they can make a pretty solid offer without them.
Over these next few days and weeks, you can expect talks to continue from all sides as players and teams consider their future in the NBA landscape.