It’s no secret that the Miami Heat are the heavy favorites to land Portland Trail Blazers’ All-Star guard Damian Lillard.
Earlier this month, the future Hall of Famer requested a trade from the only NBA team he’s ever known. Here we are almost a month after the requested trade, however, and Lillard remains a member of the Trail Blazers.
But what if Pat Riley and company decide to chase an even bigger star?
Last week, Embiid made headlines when he seemingly hinted at the idea of leaving the 76ers. At the Uninterrupted Film Festival, Embiid discussed his desire to win a championship, stating he’s unsure if that’ll be with the 76ers “or anywhere else.”
Here’s what Harper wrote on the idea of the Heat going all-in for an Embiid trade:
“Enter Jimmy Butler. The Heat have pursued Damian Lillard as he tries strong-arming his way to Miami. So far, the Blazers aren’t biting on what they deem an inferior offer for Lillard. What if the Heat focus on someone bigger and better? Could Miami use the friendship between Butler and Embiid — and their open online love fest — for a bigger swing?
Sure, Tyler Herro isn’t enticing enough for the Blazers to exchange for Dame. That’s understandable. And Daryl Morey is already processing Philly getting subpar value for Harden. However, a trade for Embiid (as awful as that might sound) is eased by Miami offering Bam Adebayo, a versatile four-time All-Star and two-time All-Defense selection.
An Adebayo-centered trade package to reunite Butler and Embiid could be an easier pill to swallow. It would end any pursuit of Lillard due to lack of assets, but such a pursuit could also not yield Lillard at all.
Ultimately, Embiid probably isn’t going anywhere. The Sixers don’t even want to trade Harden. But that won’t stop the internet from swooning over the next big transaction idea.”
The Heat made the Eastern Conference Finals as the No. 8 seed this past season. However, they lacked scoring outside of Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo to keep pace with the Denver Nuggets, who cruised through Miami in five games to win the franchise’s first NBA title.
Landing Embiid would go a long way in enhancing Miami’s chances of winning the franchise’s fourth NBA Championship. But of course, it’s unlikely that the 76ers are looking to trade their franchise star after falling just one game short of the final four.
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