Houston Rockets trade partner number 4: The Miami Heat
The Miami Heat have gotten off to an incredibly poor start after their Cinderella run to the NBA finals. Part of their problem has been the prolonged absence of Jimmy Butler but also the reality that Tyler Herro isn’t ready to lead an NBA offense.
Eric Gordon would cover for both of those deficiencies as he would provide cover for Butler and would lessen the load thrust upon Herro. The Heat have gotten very little production out of their pick and roll ball handlers this season and rank sixth from the bottom in points per possession.
Gordon, on the other hand, has been one of the better pick and roll ball handlers and has averaged 1.07 points per possession. The Heat have the 25th ranked offense and Gordon has the skill set to add extra bite to their attack.
Finally, Gordon, under contract for three more seasons after this, would provide the Heat with a long term replacement for Goran Dragic. Dragic has had an excellent career with the Heat, but he’ll be 35 years old by the end of the season and the Heat can’t expect him to remain productive as he pushes closer towards 40.
In return for Gordon, the Rockets would receive Kelly Olynyk. The move does little to improve the Rockets roster this season, outside of adding cover at the center position, but it does dramatically improve the franchise’s finances for this season and next.
Olynyk makes $4 million less than Gordon this season and as an expiring contract, the Rockets will save $58.8 million over the next three seasons. Flipping Gordon’s contract for Olynyk’s would see the Rockets only have $69 million in salary commitments for next season, which could allow them to be aggressive in free agency or allow them to absorb contracts in exchange for draft picks.
Next: Team No. 3