OTG's Trade Deadline Marathon: Some Love for the Heat
MIA receives: PF Kevin Love
CLE receives: SF Justise Winslow, PF James Johnson, 2020 1st Round Pick
Why Miami Does It: The Heat woke up today in 2nd place in the East, and with the play of youngsters Tyler Herro and Kendrick Nunn, suddenly have some credible depth and talent in the 1-2-3 region of their roster. Jimmy Butler has been Jimmy Butler. Bam Adebayo has been a revelation in the pivot, and then they have a GAPING hole at the 4. Enter Love, who would be the perfect fit for this roster both on and off the court, maintaining the proper spacing with his three-point prowess, and with the requisite championship mindset for Pat Riley. He’s twice as good as any of the Olynyk - Leonard - Johnson trio that Spoelstra has been trotting out, and makes the Heat into a truly compelling championship contender.
Why Cleveland Does It: Despite playing in his 5th year in the Association, Winslow is just six months older than Cavs rookie Dylan Windler, so he’s still firmly within the Cavs’ youth window, but with the added maturity of his experience in the NBA. With his youth and the constant turnover in Miami, Winslow hasn’t broken out entirely yet, but last year’s 12.6-5.4-4.3 campaign indicates that he could be an impact starter at the three for the Cavs -- a spot they’ve struggled to fill the last two decades when LeBron isn’t on the team. Johnson’s $15.3 million is a steep price to pay to balance the salaries, so the 1st rounder comes with him, and with so many expirings coming off the books for the Cavs this year, they can take him on with the reality that he’ll be next year’s expiring in just a few months. If a little draft luck led to James Wiseman, the Cavs are looking at Darius Garland - Kevin Porter Jr. - Winslow - Larry Nance Jr. - Wiseman starting five, and Sexton/Windler providing firepower off the bench. That’s a team with a future.
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