Tyler Herro for Johnson trade

The Heat’s trade of Herro for Johnson makes sense for both sides according to the former coach

September 16, 2022

The Miami Heat is having to make big moves in the 2022 NBA offseason, but former coach David Thorpe says there is one big move that could have a dramatic impact on the Heat’s primary players.

According to the source, Thorpe expressed his belief that the Heat should trade Tyler Herro for Phoenix Suns forward Cameron Johnson to bolster a badly lacking frontcourt.

“Though four years Herro’s senior, Johnson had two elections ahead of him in 2019,” he wrote. “An excellent defender who is improving, Johnson has shot 39 percent in his first 3 seasons and 41 percent in the past 2 postseasons. Like Herro, he was a solid role player on one of the league’s elite teams. He’s not the scorer or the shot creator, Herro is, and that matters to Miami; Still, Johnson scored 12 points per game on the second unit of a very balanced offense. Herro should get more 3-point looks in Miami, which means he would fill the void between the 3 and D [P. J.] due to Tucker’s departure.”

While there are some interesting points to Thorpe’s debacle, the thought of the Heat moving the 22-year-old reigning Sixth Man of the Year to a 26-year-old forward who has started just 36 of 183 games in the NBA. Career is somewhat ridiculous.

Of course, the Heat need depth moving forward, but trading a player who some believe has true star potential for a player who has arguably already reached his full potential seems to go against everything the Heat organization stands for.

Moreover, the more logical trade candidate for the Heat’s backcourt would arguably be Victor Oladipo. While Oladipo is still working to make a full return from various serious injuries, he has shown up in the 2022 NBA playoffs and would certainly attract trade interest if the Heat made him available.

For the Miami Heat, there seems to be a lot of confidence in the current roster despite the shortcomings. And earlier this week, guard Gabe Vincent stated that the team still has a “championship or bust” mentality.

Given that the Heat went all the way to Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals last season, this mentality certainly seems logical.

Still, there’s no denying that Tucker has left a huge hole in the team’s starting frontcourt. The Heat could try to find a trade partner to acquire a stable veteran, or they could consider having uncontracted veterans heading into the final weeks of the offseason.

What seems rather unlikely to consider, however, is trading Herro for a fairly solid backup forward in Johnson.