NBA Rumors: Heat Could 'Pivot Back' To Kyle Lowry If Victor Oladipo Experiment Fails

Kyle Lowry waiting to hear the ref's decision
Gettyimages | Mike Ehrmann
Basketball

The Miami Heat were one of the teams that were heavily linked to Toronto Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry this season. However, the 2021 trade deadline passed with Lowry staying in Toronto as the Heat and other interested teams were unable to meet the Raptors' asking price for the veteran floor general. When they failed to acquire Lowry, the Heat decided to go after another two-way player on the trade market - Victor Oladipo, whom they obtained from the Houston Rockets in exchange for Avery Bradley, Kelly Olynyk, and the rights to swap first-round picks in 2022, according to ESPN.

Heat Go For A Test Drive With Victor Oladipo

The Heat brought Oladipo to South Beach with the hope that he could be the third star that would help Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo carry the team in the 2020-21 NBA season. Oladipo may have gone through plenty of ups and downs in the past years but this season he's already starting to show a glimpse of his old self. In the 29 games he played, he's averaging 20.8 points, 5.0 rebounds, 4.7 assists, and 1.3 steals while shooting 41.1 percent from the field and 33.3 percent from beyond the arc, per Basketball-Reference.

Miami's Plan B If Victor Oladipo Experiment Fails

Kyle Lowry celebrating Raptors' win
Gettyimages | Douglas P. DeFelice

If Oladipo lives up to their expectations, the Heat may consider extending their partnership with him in the 2021 free agency. However, if Oladipo struggles with his role as the team's third star this season, Kevin O'Connor of The Ringer believes that the Heat could "pivot back" to Lowry.

"If it doesn’t work out with Oladipo, the Heat could pivot back to Lowry. League sources said if Lowry had been traded, his preference was the Heat because of his close friendship with Jimmy Butler."

Heat Could Offer Kyle Lowry A Decent Contract In 2021 Free Agency

The Heat are indeed in a strong position to steal Lowry from the Raptors in the 2021 free agency. Aside from the presence of Butler on their roster, the Heat could also offer the veteran point guard a lucrative deal this offseason.

"The Heat can realistically create about $26 million in space while retaining the restricted free-agent rights to Robinson and Kendrick Nunn, if the salary cap is $112 million as currently projected," O'Connor wrote. "That number falls short of all max contracts for next season—which range from $28 million for players coming off rookie deals to $39 million for players with 10-plus years of experience—but it could be more than enough to entice Lowry."

Heat Could Form Own Superteam In 2021 Offseason

After using their salary cap space to bring Lowry to Miami in 2021 free agency, the Heat could turn their attention next to the trade market. The Heat may not have a plethora of future first-round picks, but they have an interesting collection of young and promising talents like Tyler Herro, Duncan Robinson, Precious Achiuwa.

By using those three players as trade chips, the Heat could acquire another All-Star who would join forces with Butler, Adebayo, and Lowry and enable them to create their own superteam in the 2021-22 NBA season.