Could Sacramento Kings be a landing spot for Heat’s Tyler Johnson?

Miami’s Tyler Johnson reacts during a game against Washington on March 6. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

LAS VEGAS – With Sacramento looking to add a shooting guard and losing out on their first choice, could the Kings be a landing spot for the Heat’s Tyler Johnson?

The Kings gave restricted free agent Zach LaVine a four-year, $78 million contract offer that the Bulls matched, leaving Sacramento with about $19.5 million in cap space and still looking for an additional shooting guard. Reports then surfaced Sacramento was preparing to pursue Celtics free agent guard Marcus Smart, but that was shot down and no offer has come so far.

The Kings apparently are not giving up, and Tyler Johnson could be a backup plan if nothing else materializes.

Johnson, whose contract is about to spike to $19.25 million in 2017-18 and has two years remaining, would be cheaper than LaVine seeing the annual payout would be about the same but Johnson would have two fewer years on his deal. Johnson grew up about 120 miles south of Sacramento, in the Bay area, and attended college at Fresno State.

Although the Heat have been dormant since July 1, that doesn’t mean Pat Riley isn’t on the phone. The main objective is to clear cap space, which still would benefit Miami this late in the game with free agents Wayne Ellington, Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem still unsigned and reports surfacing the Heat have met with Carmelo Anthony, who will sever ties with Oklahoma City either through a trade, the NBA’s stretch provision or a buyout.

Freeing up $19 million would put the Heat about $1 million below the salary cap but more importantly about $23 million away from the luxury tax threshold, allowing Riley and the Heat more flexibility to bring back their free agents along with having the option to offer minimum or exception money, depending on what they pay Wade, to other players.

Additionally, Miami would fall about $11 million under the 2019-20 projected salary cap of $109 million. The 2019 free agency class is one of the richest in recent history and although $11 million won’t buy a superstar, it does put the Heat closer in case it can move more money or, at the very least, it allows them to add a solid player.

The other benefit to trading Johnson is it helps alleviate the logjam at shooting guard that could include Dion Waiters, Ellington, Wade, Josh Richardson and Rodney McGruder. Richardson, who played shooting guard for most of 2017-18, is expected to start at small forward this season.

The Kings are loaded with youth in the backcourt with three of their top four guards – point guards De’Aaron Fox and Frank Mason III and shooting guard Bogdan Bogdanovich – having just one-year in the NBA. Shooting guard Buddy Hield has been in the league two years. Bogdanovich was Sacramento’s second leading scorer last season with 11.8 points per game.

Johnson, who also can fill in at point guard, has played four seasons with the Heat. His scoring slipped to 11.7 point per game last year after averaging 13.7 in 2016-17, when he came off the bench in all 73 games he played.

[Heat coach Eric Glass says Derrick Walton Jr. still contributing despite shooting woes]

[Erik Spoelstra says he, center Hassan Whiteside are in constant contact; adds relationship ‘isn’t what it seems on the outside’]

[What do you need to know about new Heat two-way contract player Duncan Robinson? He’s not just a shooter]

[Heat GM Andy Elisburg had advice for Cavaliers GM after losing LeBron: ‘It ends, and you have to start again’]

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What’s in store for the Miami Heat this offseason? A roster breakdown with a look at what’s next for each player

MIAMI — The Heat entered the offseason with a lot of questions surrounding their roster and very little financial flexibility to make significant changes.

Excluding cap holds, the Heat have 11 players under contract for 2018-19 who are due about $120 million. That puts Miami way above the $101.9 million salary cap and very close to the $123.7 million luxury tax line.

Unable to sign players into space because the Heat are capped out, they will have to rely on exceptions, minimum contracts, the power of Bird rights or even trades to fill out their roster.

Here’s what the Heat have to work with this offseason, with a player-by-player breakdown … Continue reading “What’s in store for the Miami Heat this offseason? A roster breakdown with a look at what’s next for each player”

2018 Miami Heat Free Agency Primer: What you need to know about the Heat’s salary cap situation

Heat players Hassan Whiteside, Dwyane Wade, Wayne Ellington and Bam Adebayo look from the bench during overtime against the Brooklyn Nets at the AmericanAirlines Arena in Miami on Saturday. (David Santiago/El Nuevo Herald/TNS)

MIAMI — With free agency upon us, here’s a look at the Heat’s salary cap situation.

Miami currently has 10 players under contract for 2018-19 who are due about $119 million (assuming Rodney McGruder’s $1.5 million salary is guaranteed by Saturday’s deadline, as expected). That puts the Heat way above the $101.9 million salary cap, very close to the $123.7 million luxury tax line and not in a position to aggressively pursue free agents. Continue reading “2018 Miami Heat Free Agency Primer: What you need to know about the Heat’s salary cap situation”

UPDATED: Miami Heat swingman Rodney McGruder’s contract guaranteed for 2018-19

Heat wing Rodney McGruder’s contract is guaranteed for the 2018-19 season. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

Rodney McGruder is returning for a third season with the Miami Heat.

The Heat allowed the midnight deadline to pass on the contract for the 6-foot-5 shooting guard/small forward, assuring that his $1.545 million deal is guaranteed for the 2018-19 season.

McGruder signed a three-year, partially-guaranteed contract for $2.5 million in 2016. He will collect on all three years, making $543,471 in 2016-17 and $1.313 million last season.

When asked about McGruder’s return following last week’s draft, president Pat Riley was noncommittal, citing the Heat’s “tight roster.” But Riley added: “We love Rodney.”

The Heat now have 10 players under contract for 2018-19 who are due about $119 million. That puts Miami about $17 million above the projected $101.869 million salary cap and very close to the projected $123.733 million luxury tax line.

McGruder, who turns 27 next month, played in just 18 games last season after undergoing surgery in October to repair a left tibia stress fracture. His role was limited and he averaged just 5.1 points in 16.6 minutes per game.

“Rodney was on his way,” coach Erik Spoelstra said following the season. “He was probably the most productive player in training camp and through the beginning of preseason and he had basically 80 percent of his regular season taken away from him and then a totally different role than probably he anticipated and probably what he certainly was going to earn based on his offseason and the beginning of the season.”

McGruder burst onto the scene in 2016-17, making an NBA roster for the first time on the final cut down day. McGruder, who had played two years in the developmental league and a year in Hungry, stepped in for the injured Justise Winslow and started 65 games at small forward. He finished the season playing in a team-high 78 games and averaged 6.4 points, 3.3 rebounds and 1.6 assists. Miami relied on him to guard some the best scoring wings in the league, including Kevin Durant, LeBron James, Paul George and Jimmy Butler.

McGruder will battle for playing time on a roster that could be loaded with shooting guards and small forwards including Dion Waiters, Josh Richardson, Tyler Johnson, Winslow, McGruder and possibly Wayne Ellington and/or Dwyane Wade.

2018 Heat Offseason Preview

[With no cap space to use in free agency this summer, is planning for future Heat’s best bet?]

[Friday’s question: Does Hassan Whiteside’s contract make him untradeable?]

[Thursday’s question: With no cap space, can Heat turn to trades to improve roster?]

[Wednesday’s question: Will 3-point specialist Wayne Ellington return to Heat?]

[Tuesday’s question: Will Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem return for a 16th NBA season or retire?]

[Monday’s question: LeBron James could be on the move again, do the Heat have a chance of bringing him back?]

[Want more Heat news sent directly to your Facebook feed? Make sure to like our Heat Facebook page]

 

2018 Miami Heat Offseason Preview: With no cap space, can Heat turn to trades to improve roster?

Miami Heat NBA basketball team president Pat Riley talks to the media during a season ending press conference in Miami, Wednesday, April 19, 2017. (David Santiago/El Nuevo Herald via AP)

The NBA starts a new fiscal year at 12 a.m. Sunday, which also signals the start of free agency and what once again will be a busy offseason. The Miami Heat may not be as big a player as usual this offseason because of roster and payroll limitations, but president Pat Riley still will be busy trying to find a way to upgrade his roster, however difficult that may be.

This week we take a look at the biggest offseason questions surrounding the Heat. Today’s question: Can the Heat improve through trades this offseason? We’ll shift to a different question each day leading up to the start of free agency. Continue reading “2018 Miami Heat Offseason Preview: With no cap space, can Heat turn to trades to improve roster?”

Heat Mailbag: Could Wizards-Clippers trade set up deal that involves Hassan Whiteside? That & more on Winslow at the point

Maimi’s Hassan Whiteside shoots over Washington’s Marcin Gortat and Otto Porter Jr. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

Time for another Miami Heat mailbag

If you were not able to ask a question this time, send them along for future mailbags via Twitter to @tomdangelo44 and @Anthony_Chiang. You can also e-mail me at tdangelo@pbpost.com.

From @ChrisHypeTrain: Could the Wizards-Clippers trade also set up trade involving the Heat?

The Wizards and Clippers made an intriguing swap Tuesday with Washington sending center Marcin Gortat to L.A. for combo guard Austin Rivers. The Clippers have DeAndre Jordan on the roster but likely are bracing to lose Jordan either through free agency (he can decline his $24.1 million option) or a trade if he opts in. Washington now is in dire need of a center to replace Gortat. Besides, after another season of underachieving the Wizards entered this offseason knowing they needed to make some changes. And even if they decide to keep their All-Star backcourt of John Wall and Bradley Beal intact, that probably meant more than swapping Gortat for Rivers.

The next name on the block could be 6-foot-8 Otto Porter Jr., and here is where the Heat could come into play.

[RELATED: Photos of the incredible style at the 2018 NBA Draft]

A year ago, the Wizards matched the Nets’ $106 million offer sheet for Porter. That deal has three years and $81.7 million remaining. The Heat have a center they likely are looking to move by the name of Hassan Whiteside who will be very difficult to deal considering his contract (two years remaining at $52.5 million), declining production and maturity issues.

But with the money pretty similar – Porter will make $26 million next season while Whiteside will make $25.4 – the Wizards may look at it as coming out ahead not only by acquiring a starting center but by saving on that third year. But that third year is what could cause Pat Riley some hesitation considering the Heat have just $40.7 million on the books in 2020 with the contracts of Whiteside, Goran Dragic and Tyler Johnson expiring. Porter would add $28.5 million to that in the final year of his deal if he exercises his player option. Porter, 25, averaged 14.7 points, 6.4 rebounds and 2.0 assists last season while shooting 50.3 percent, 44.1 percent on threes. And although he spent a lot of time at shooting guard his rookie season of 2013-14, Porter played about two-thirds of his minutes at small forward and one-third at power forward last season.

The Wizards, though, could go another way. With Dwight Howard and the Nets expected to agree on a buyout, Washington might pursue Howard, who would be much cheaper considering he’ll be receiving a nice fat check from Brooklyn.

From Billy Mizell: What do you think the chances are that the organization will help Justise Winslow pursue running point for the team in the future? Justise seems to have found his niche there & it seems to give him a level of confidence that was missing previously.

This is a good question and it looks like Billy saw what many of us saw last season. Although the majority of the 6-8 Winslow’s time was spent at power forward, coach Erik Spoelstra used him as a facilitator at times and he appeared to be very comfortable with the ball in his hands.

“I really enjoyed playing point guard and I think that’s something as the offseason goes on I’ll sit down and talk to Spo more about,” Winslow said a few days after the Heat season ended.

As far as taking over for Dragic on a permanent basis one day, that will be determined by any trades the Heat might make and Winslow’s progress at the position. But, yes, I believe Winslow will work hard on his ball handling skills this summer and depending on the roster makeup his role as a point guard definitely could expand next season.

[2018 Miami Heat Offseason Preview: Will 3-point specialist Wayne Ellington return to Heat?]

[Tuesday’s question: Will Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem return for a 16th NBA season or retire?]

[Monday’s question: LeBron James could be on the move again, do the Heat have a chance of bringing him back?]

[Want more Heat news sent directly to your Facebook feed? Make sure to like our Heat Facebook page]

Heat Mailbag: With Spurs rejecting offers from teams in West for Leonard, could Miami jump in? That & more on summer league

Heat president Pat Riley talks with the media at a season-end press conference on in April. (Photo Tom D’Angelo)

Time for another Miami Heat mailbag

If you were not able to ask a question this time, send them along for future mailbags via Twitter to @tomdangelo44 and @Anthony_Chiang. You can also e-mail me at tdangelo@pbpost.com.

[RELATED: Photos of the incredible style at the 2018 NBA Draft]

From @royvt: Can Pat Riley take advantage of (the Spurs not listening to any offers from Kawhi Leonard from Western Conference teams)?

Reports surfaced last week that the Spurs won’t even take the Lakers’ calls and won’t consider offers from any team in the West if they ultimately decide to move Leonard.

Of course, this could all be posturing, which nearly everything you hear this time of the year is, and San Antonio’s way to drive up the price for Leonard from the Lakers. But, if San Antonio truly is set on only trading Leonard to a team from the Eastern Conference, and it rejects all offers from Western Conference teams even if they outweigh any from their counterparts in the East, where do the Heat stand?

Knocking out any potential Western Conference teams benefits everybody in the East, but that does not change the Heat’s situation that much. Acquiring Leonard still comes as a big risk for Miami, and every other team, considering he can opt out of the final year of his contract and become a free agent next season. Even if Miami could put together the most attractive package in the Spurs’ eyes – and that is a big if considering the assets the Celtics and Sixers have – it would risk forfeiting its entire future if it traded Josh Richardson, Justise Winslow and Bam Adebayo and Leonard were to bolt next year.

The other side of this is Leonard can essentially dictate where he is traded by telling any team he will not re-sign with them next summer, which drastically reduces San Antonio’s leverage.

From @AsherWildMan6: Matt Farrell is a true PG. He graduated from Notre Dame and can shoot the three and attacks the hoop. Without knowing how long Dragic is in play as the PG, could Miami have found their PG of the future? Think he either makes the team or can be a PG of this team in 2-3 years playing sparingly this year?

The 6-foot Farrell will join the Heat’s summer league roster as an undrafted free agent after averaging 16.3 points and 5.5 assists his senior year at Notre Dame and being named to the All-ACC third team. He is a solid playmaker with a high basketball IQ but lacks athletic ability and is undersized. He was projected to be taken late in the second round or go undrafted.

As for his possible future with the Heat, that can be better answered after the three weeks of summer league play – Miami will participate in the Sacramento summer league July 2-5 and Las Vegas summer league July 6-17. Even if Farrell has an impressive summer, is invited to fall camp and the Heat like what they see, chances are he would be sent to Sioux Falls, the Heat’s G League developmental team. The Heat have gotten by without a true backup to point guard Goran Dragic the last two years using a variety of players to facilitate offense when Dragic was on the bench, including Justise Winslow, who started playing the position last season. Winslow and Josh Richardson are working more on their ball handling skills this summer but whether that means either will become more of an option at the point, or if the Heat decide to sign a true point guard for next season, remains to be seen.

[2018 Miami Heat Offseason Preview: LeBron James could be on the move again, do the Heat have a chance of bringing him back?]

[Pat Riley is on Twitter, but he does not have a burner account. Let him explain …]

[It’s easy to criticize how Heat have handled (traded) a lot of their recent draft picks, but it’s also easy to justify]

[Want more Heat news sent directly to your Facebook feed? Make sure to like our Heat Facebook page]

This may not be the summer Pat Riley is able to work his magic, which will leave Heat fans with an empty feeling again

Miami Heat President Pat Riley attends the NBA draft combine last month in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

Barring a trade, the Miami Heat will be sitting out the NBA draft for just the third time in their history.

But don’t mistake that for Pat Riley sitting on a yacht off some tropical island and a “closed” sign being hung on the offices at 601 Biscayne Blvd.

The Heat certainly are open for business as the NBA’s offseason officially kicks off with Thursday’s draft and then hits a frenzied pace 10 days later with the start of free agency. Somehow, the Heat will manage to join the party – they seemingly always do – but will they become bystanders or can they find a way to become the life of the party?

Recent history has not been kind to the Heat. Miami has entered the last two summers full of hope and optimism just from getting sit-downs with the two most coveted free agents – Kevin Durant in 2016 and Gordon Hayward in 2017.

Admittedly a longshot both years – more so with Durant – Miami had to settle for Plan B, in both cases. In 2016 – and after losing Dwyane Wade – that meant basically starting over by offering one-year deals to lower-level free agents and develop its young core of Hassan Whiteside, Josh Richardson, Justise Winslow and Tyler Johnson. Last summer that meant holding onto free agents from the previous summer that showed promise – James Johnson, Dion Waiters and Wayne Ellington – and picking up a nice supplemental part, which the Heat did with the solid signing of Kelly Olynyk.

Which brings us to the summer of 2018.

After watching Durant being convinced to chase rings at Golden State and Brad Stevens convincing Hayward to turn back the clock to his college days in Boston, could the Heat be looking at having failed to meet their highest expectations for the third consecutive summer?

Miami has been as much a victim of its own success and Riley’s reputation as anything else. Few teams ever even make the final cut when it comes to the summer’s biggest catch, but the Heat seem to every year. They did in 2010 and capitalized, leading to two titles and four consecutive Finals appearances, which raised the bar even higher. They did again the last two summers, although the outcome was far less satisfying than 2010.

For every LeBron James and Chris Bosh there is a Kevin Durant and Gordon Hayward. And while some may look at it as if Riley is losing his touch, just by getting in the door every year shows his reputation remains intact.

Throwing a bag of championship rings on the table still resonates.

So how will 2018 play out? The Heat enter this offseason in a much different place with no flexibility and few assets to offer as major trade bait. And this free agency class is top heavy with Durant, James, Chris Paul, Paul George and DeMarcus Cousins leading the way, with James, George and Cousins the realistic choices to switch teams.

And even without anything to offer, Riley still likely will get a sit-down with James. But getting in the door and closing the deal are two very different things. The only way James returns to Miami is for Riley and Andy Elisburg to pull off a stunning sign-and-trade that would involve convincing James the Heat are on the cusp of contending and then convincing Cavs owner Dan Gilbert to once again deal with Riley.

There is a better chance of Cleveland becoming the No. 1 tourist destination in the country than that happening.

Otherwise, Riley will be left to work his magic via a trade. But even those odds of obtaining someone like Kawhi Leonard appear stacked against the Heat. Still, Riley will not sit idly by. Leonard is not the only “transformative” player the Heat can pursue to improve this roster. Plenty of names will be discussed and several could be targeted by the Heat.

Players like Bradley Beal, DeMar DeRozan, C.J. McCollum, John Wall and Andrew Wiggins to name a few could be explored. Any one of them would immediately become the best player on the Heat if acquired.

Yes, the pressure is on Riley to improve this team. The optics of bringing back this roster, one that won 44 games and lasted just five games in playoffs, intact would not be good. But Riley may have no choice and he raised that possibility following the season,.

I expect Riley to pull off some kind of deal to shake up this team even if it means putting the franchise in a better position for the future. Making a significant move, though, will be very difficult. Heat fans may be left wanting for more – for the third consecutive year – but even Riley may not be able to work that magic this summer.

[Mailbag: Would Heat give up all young talent for Kawhi Leonard without guarantee? That & more on Grizzlies rumors, possible draft day deal]

[Udonis Haslem on LeBron James’ visit to Miami during playoffs: ‘We sat down to eat, is that a crime?’]

[Possible NBA draft rule change could prove costly for Heat]

[Want more Heat news sent directly to your Facebook feed? Make sure to like our Heat Facebook page]

 

 

Mailbag: Would Heat give up all young talent for Kawhi Leonard without guarantee? That & more on Grizzlies rumors, possible draft day deal

San Antonio’s Kawhi Leonard reacts after a basket against the Memphis Grizzlies during the 2017 playoffs. (Photo by Ronald Cortes/Getty Images)

Time for another Miami Heat mailbag

If you were not able to ask a question this time, send them along for future mailbags via Twitter to @tomdangelo44 and @Anthony_Chiang. You can also e-mail me at tdangelo@pbpost.com.

From @TheSpencerG: If Heat were to get Kawhi how do we stay competitive w/o giving up too much?

Several questions about the possibility of trading for San Antonio’s Kawhi Leonard, as you would expect. A couple centered on the price to acquire one of the top five players and arguably best two-way player in the league when healthy.

Everything has been speculation but the most widely reported deal when it comes to the Heat is Miami sending Goran Dragic, Josh Richardson, Justise Winslow and Bam Adebayo to San Antonio for Leonard and Patty Mills. With Leonard set to make $20.1 million and Mills $11.6 million, this deal would work. But what becomes the real gamble, even if both sides agree, is Leonard can opt out of the final year of his contract and become a free agent next season.

Without a guarantee from Leonard, it’s unlikely the Heat makes this move and gives up their three most valued young assets and the foundation of the future. Even if Miami believed it had a chance to retain Leonard and sign him to a long-term deal, that would have to be predicated on Leonard liking what he sees during the season and believing the Heat are on the cusp of contending. But with a nucleus of Leonard, Mills, Dion Waiters, Kelly Olynyk, Hassan Whiteside, James Johnson, Tyler Johnson, Dwyane Wade (if he returns), and Wayne Ellington (if he re-signs) just how good is this team?

Without some kind of assurance from Leonard, the Heat would have a difficult time pulling the trigger on this deal. But if Miami could get Leonard to commit (and, yes, that still comes with a bit of a gamble), it’s a deal the Heat definitely will think seriously about making.

From @Shadow_Knight3: Should Heat try to take a chance at Parsons which includes the 4th pick of the Draft.

Before answering this question let me say that nothing has been reported of talks between the Heat and Grizzlies. But a variation of one trade has been speculated so we’ll address it.

Memphis reportedly is so desperate to dump Chandler Parsons that they are willing to attach the No. 4 overall pick to a deal. A high price and one that is hard to believe depending on the return. Chandler, a 6-foot-9 small forward, was one of the worst signings of the summer of 2016 (and there were plenty) when Memphis gave him a four-year maximum contract worth $94.8 million. If the numbers sound familiar they should because it’s very close to the deal the Heat gave Whiteside that same summer.

The Parsons signing has been more disastrous for Memphis than the Whiteside signing has been for the Heat. He has played in just 70 games the last two seasons and is averaging 7.1 points,  2.5 rebounds and 1.8 assists while shooting 40.1 percent.

But just how desperate are the Grizzlies to dump that salary and could the Heat jump in to try to steal that pick? The more likely deal would be Parsons for Whiteside straight up. Two bad contracts traded for each other. The other big issue is then what does Memphis do with Marc Gasol, another bad contract, who is due to make 49.7 the next two seasons? And how would that help the Heat? As difficult as it was to watch Whiteside during the playoffs, he has given the Heat much more in the last two seasons than Parson has given the Grizzlies and that would solve nothing when it comes to the Heat’s salary cap situation.

Which means anyone who believes the Grizzlies would take Whiteside’s contract for Parsons and the No. 4 pick is delusional. Memphis is looking to dump a bad contract and does not want one in return. But let’s play along and say Memphis is that desperate, do the Heat have what the Grizzlies want to make the deal? The deal certainly could have to include some combination of Richardson, Winslow and Adebayo. But it is enough for Memphis to give up the chance of drafting Luca Doncic or Jaren Jackson Jr., or Mohamed Bamba or Michael Porter? And do the Heat believe a transformative player will be around at No. 4?

From @GajjarRahi: Who’s your starting SF in the future? Justice or Jrich?

A lot depends on the makeup of the roster but if both players are a part of the future, the Heat would ideally like to see Richardson at shooting guard and Winslow at small forward. But that is a big if with both being valuable trade assets and the Heat looking to upgrade the roster.

From @jphillips19915 Jun 17: Will we make a move Thursday night?

Oh yeah, there is a draft Thursday. Anything is possible as we discussed above with the reports concerning the Grizzlies, but the most likely scenario is Miami possibly obtaining a second-round pick. The tricky part is unless it is for a player, the deal could not be announced until July 1, which is when the Heat would have the money to trade for a pick in the second round.

[Udonis Haslem on LeBron James’ visit to Miami during playoffs: ‘We sat down to eat, is that a crime?’]

[Possible NBA draft rule change could prove costly for Heat]

[The Kawhi Leonard sweepstakes is on. Should the Heat enter the mix?]

[Mailbag: Is there even a realistic way for the Heat to acquire LeBron James?]

[Want more Heat news sent directly to your Facebook feed? Make sure to like our Heat Facebook page]

 

 

 

Here are 10 big names – and possible Heat targets – that could be on the move as NBA offseason is days away

Miami Heat President Pat Riley attends the NBA draft basketball combine May 18 in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

The NBA season is coming to a close and with the Warriors two wins away from a Finals sweep over the Cavaliers, that could be Friday. Although nothing is stopping the other 28 teams from making trades now, the real offseason starts when the Finals end.

And the only way for teams to make a splash between now and the start of free agency on July 1 is through trades. The two biggest trades of last summer came before free agency began with the Bulls dealing Jimmy Butler to Minnesota on June 22, the night of the draft, and the Pacers agreeing to trade Paul George to OKC hours before free agency began.

Trade talk typically starts gaining momentum the week of the draft, which is June 21, and that’s when we could start hearing rumors about the Heat. Pat Riley is in the market for a “transformative” player, and any others who could improve his roster, and expect the Heat to be active. But whether they can pull off a major deal remains to be seen.

If so, here are 10 big names that could be moved. Do the Heat have a chance of landing any of them?

Carmelo Anthony, 6-8, PF, Oklahoma City: At 34, Anthony’s best years clearly are behind him but I believe he has more left than we saw in his one year in OKC. He is expected to pick up his option for $27.9 million so any trade involving Anthony would have to include a bad contract going to Thunder.

Bradley Beal, 6-5, SG, Washington: Nobody has underachieved like the Wizards the last few years and with another playoff flameout Washington is ready to make some moves. That could mean breaking up their backcourt of Beal and John Wall. Which one would go? And to who? Remember, several other teams are in the same spot so it could simply be trading one star guard for another.

DeMar DeRozan, 6-7, SG, Toronto: The Raptors are one of those teams in a situation similar to Washington’s. Riley has admitted the Heat have too many shooting guards, especially if Dwyane Wade returns, so Miami would have to move someone like Tyler Johnson (and his $19.2 million salary for next season) in a deal involving DeRozan.

Kawhi Leonard, 6-7, SF, San Antonio: The target of every team looking to land a superstar through a trade. This would take some doing by the Heat, especially when teams like Boston, Philadelphia, the Lakers and others have more assets to give the Spurs.

Kyle Lowry, 6-0, PG, Toronto: The Raptors won’t move both DeRozan and Lowry. Lowry’s age – he is 32, DeRozan is 28 – and contract – two years and $64.3 million remaining – makes him the player Toronto would rather trade but also the more difficult of the two to deal. Would the Heat pursue Lowry, or a bigger deal with Toronto, and move Goran Dragic?

C.J. McCollum, 6-3, PG, Portland: Five straight years of playoff failures, including being bounced in the first round the last two seasons, has the Trail Blazers thinking about making changes. Their backcourt of McCollum and Damian Lillard is one of the best in the league and splitting it up would be the most impactful move.

Karl-Anthony Towns, 7-0, C, Minnesota: With rumblings of uneasiness within the Timberwolves organization, they could look to move Towns, although their first choice is trading Andrew Wiggins. Towns would come with a hefty price that probably would start with Bam Adebayo and Josh Richardson and the Heat taking back a bad contract or two, which means the Heat would have to move one of their bad contracts to make this work.

Kemba Walker, 6-1, PG, Charlotte: Walker could be on the block as the Hornets look to rebuild with new coach James Borrego. Moving Walker, and the final year remaining on his contract ($12 million), would be the best way but only if they could attach a bad contract to the deal.

John Wall, 6-4, PG, Washington: The Wizards will not move both Beal and Wall, but if they could move one it would be Wall, whose four-year, $170 million extension kicks in starting with the 2019-20 season. But who is willing to take on a salary that averages $42.5 million a year?

Andrew Wiggins, 6-8, SF, Minnesota: The man the Timberwolves really want to unload, especially with $146.5 million coming to him in the next five years. The Heat would have leverage because of Wiggins’ contract so they would certainly have to make Tyler Johnson or Hassan Whiteside part of the trade.

[Heat Mailbag: Is the Brightline station mural a message to Whiteside? That & more on Richardson]

[Heat Mailbag: Does LeBron James look like a man who is ready to bolt Cleveland again? That & more on Whiteside, the draft]

[Heat offseason Q&A: Udonis Haslem not going to rush decision on his future]

[Heat offseason Q&A: Kelly Olynyk from India on Basketball Without Borders, his offseason & more]

[Want more Heat news sent directly to your Facebook feed? Make sure to like our Heat Facebook page]