NBA Rumors: Heat Could Have Created 'Big 4' Of James Harden, LaMarcus Aldridge, Jimmy Butler & Bam Adebayo

Jimmy Butler guarding James Harden
Gettyimages | Tim Warner

Since the 2020 offseason, the Miami Heat were aggressive on the market, trying to upgrade their roster around Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo. At the 2021 trade deadline, the Heat successfully acquired a quality two-way player when they traded Kelly Olynyk, Avery Bradley, and the right to swap picks in 2022 to the Houston Rockets in exchange for Victor Oladipo. Unfortunately, despite the addition of Oladipo, the Heat are still currently not viewed on the same level as other Eastern Conference powerhouse teams like the Brooklyn Nets, Milwaukee Bucks, and the Philadelphia 76ers.

Heat Could Have Formed Fearsome Foursome In South Beach

Had the Heat made a different decision earlier in the 2020-21 NBA season, Farbod Esnaashari of Bleacher Report believes that they would have formed a "Big 4" of Butler, Adebayo, James Harden, and LaMarcus Aldridge. When Harden publicly demanded a trade from the Rockets, the Heat were emerging as one of the top preferred landing spots of "The Beard."

For months, the Heat have been engaged in a trade discussion with the Rockets. Unfortunately, a deal failed to materialize and Houston ended up sending Harden to their Eastern Conference rivals, the Brooklyn Nets.

Why James-To-Heat Blockbuster Didn't Happen

With their collection of young and promising talents like Tyler Herro, Duncan Robinson, Kendrick Nunn, and Precious Achiuwa, the Heat were in a strong position to engage in a blockbuster deal with the Rockets involving Harden. However, Esnaashari revealed that the Heat decided to pass on the deal because they believed that Houston's asking price for "The Beard" was too high.

"According to sources within the organization, the Heat ultimately fell short in the sweepstakes because they felt like they 'shouldn't give up every single asset they had.' They believed Houston's asking price was largely unrealistic."

Impact Of Failed James Harden Trade

As of now, most people believe that the Heat have regretted their decision not to trade for Harden. Had they went all-in for Harden, a superteam would have been built in Miami and not in Brooklyn. When Aldridge agreed to a buyout with the San Antonio Spurs, the Heat were also a frontrunner to sign him as a free agent.

Unfortunately, Aldridge ultimately ended up signing with the Nets since compared to Butler and Adebayo, he reportedly believes that joining forces with Harden, Kyrie Irving, and Kevin Durant in Brooklyn would give him a better chance of winning the NBA championship title this year.

Heat Still Expected To Be Aggressive In 2021 Offseason

As of now, the Heat are focused on winning the 2021 NBA championship title with the current talents that they have. However, when the 2020-21 NBA season is officially over, the Heat are expected to be active on the market again, searching for major roster upgrades. They are one of the few teams in the league that would enter the 2021 offseason with a huge salary cap space and a plethora of precious trade assets.

So far, they have already been linked to several players who are expected to be available in the 2021 offseason, including Kyle Lowry of the Toronto Raptors, Bradley Beal of the Washington Wizards, DeMar DeRozan of the San Antonio Spurs, and Lonzo Ball of the New Orleans Pelicans,