The NBA Draft Combine is history and tonight is the Draft Lottery to determine the exact order of the draft.
The Miami Heat will have a lottery pick for just the third time in the last 14 years, but what will they do with that pick if they remain 14th or by some miracle move up in the lottery?
We answer that today in our mailbag. Keep those questions coming. Send via Twitter to @Anthony_Chiang and @tomdangelo44.
From @BryanIsTheKing: Will Miami try and trade up in the draft?
From @Tealman12: Trade down/out of draft right?
The Heat enter with a 1.8 percent chance of moving up into one of the three spots, including 0.5 percent of moving into the top pick, 0.6 percent of getting the second pick and 0.7 percent of securing the third pick.
Let’s take these separately: If the Heat remain 14th, the most likely scenario, forget trading up. Miami has just one player that could get it a top 10 pick and Pat Riley is not trading Hassan Whiteside for a pick. Trading down would be an interesting thought. Miami has very few picks going forward. Already it has traded away its 2018 and 2021 first-round picks in the Goran Dragic trade. The 2018 pick is top 7 protected, in which case it would keep that pick and lose 2019. Also Miami has traded its next five second round picks.
After about the 10th pick this year the thinking is there are about 10 or more players who are pretty evenly grouped. So if the Heat’s desire is to recover a pick or two and believes any one of those players remaining on the board can help when we get to the 14th pick, perhaps they think of trading down in the first round and pick up a second rounder. Also, do not rule out the possibility of buying a second round pick.
If the Heat defy the odds and win the lottery, that means they will have a top three pick, which means at least two players among the following will be available to them – Washington’s Markelle Fultz, UCLA’s Lonzo Ball, Kansas’ Josh Jackson, Duke’s Jayson Tatum. The Heat would then be in a very enviable spot: Plan to pick one of these supposed can’t-miss guys or start conversations with teams like the Bulls for Jimmy Butler or the Pacers for Paul George.
From @NikoDevlin: how long until Miami can give more money to Tyler Johnson?
Here is the breakdown on Johnson’s contract: The Heat matched a four year, $50 million offer last summer he was extended by the Nets. Johnson made $5.628 million last season and will earn a little more than $5.881 million next year before the big money kicks in.
The number jumps to a little more than $18.858 in 2018-19 and about $19.631 million in 2019-20.