2022 NBA Offseason Preview: Miami Heat

After a quick exit from the first round in 2021, the heat Bring a few experienced players into the tournament, complete a signing and trading deal for Kyle Lowryusing most of their mid-level exceptions in PJ Tuckerand signature Markive Morris To hold a minimum salary. At the same time, Miami bet on young players like Gabe Vincent And the Max Strauss Prepare for bigger roles after spending the 2020/21 season in two-way deals with the team.

While all of the Heat’s off-season moves didn’t pay off – a neck injury cost Morris most of the season and he wasn’t part of the playoff rotation – the club’s overall strategy has been good. Lowry, Tucker, Vincent and Strus all played major roles in completing the All-Stars Jimmy Butler And the Pam Adebayo The sixth is the man of the year Tyler Herowhile other young people love Caleb Martin And the Omar Yurtseven Proven value on minimum salary contracts.

The Deep and Balanced Miami team won the #1 seed in the Eastern Conference with a regular season record 53-29, then won a pair of series games over Atlanta and Philadelphia. Unfortunately, by the time of the Eastern Conference Finals, the Heat’s roster was incredibly shattered, with Lowry particularly limited by a hamstring injury that kept him out of eight playoffs. The club did not have enough tank to beat the Celtics, and lost to Boston in a seven-game battle that went straight to the wire.

While the Heat didn’t quite live up to the title, you can prove that their roster was of championship caliber, or at least very close to it. If a couple went a little differently, it might have been Miami, not Boston, that represented the East in the NBA Finals. The job of the front office this season will be to determine how best to keep the Heat at the championship level and then find the missing piece that can help put them at the top.

Hit Season Plan:

The Heat has five players on guaranteed contracts for 2022/23. Among these players, it is safe to assume that Butler and Adebayo are not going anywhere. This is uncertain for Lowry, Herro and Duncan Robinson.

Lowry has always been a player whose value exceeds chest point numbers. He’s a gifted defender with a knack for taking charge, and his offensive creativity helps get baskets he’s not credited with points or assists. However, he’s turned 36 this year, his flashy ANA numbers are starting to drop, and hamstring issues have turned him into a below-average rotating player in many of the Heat’s biggest games this spring.

Based on his contract (2 years, $58 million), Lowry may have negative value as a trading chip at this point, which means the Heat will likely stick with him, as he still manages to offer more value in the ballpark than he does a trading asset. However, if Miami gets the chance to acquire a younger backcountry star and has to use Lowry as a salary-matching piece, I can’t imagine they would hesitate to do so.

Robinson appears to be a potentially unfamiliar business segment, given that its 2022/23 cap number ($16.9 million) is more manageable than Lowry’s. As a high-volume three-point shooter who has tied 40.6% of his career attempts from outside the arc, Robinson is a solid role player, especially during the regular season. But his defensive limitations were a problem in the playoffs, as he provided little value on the court when his shot didn’t drop regularly.

If the Heat uses Robinson for an unfamiliar deal, they will need to include at least one additional asset in the package to have a chance of acquiring an influential player. This asset is likely to be a preliminary choice. Miami has the potential to move its first-round pick for 2022 (27th overall) and/or first-rounder in 2023, as well as at least one future all-rounder (not before 2027). Picking one or two of these picks might be enough to sweeten the deal for most realistic off-season trading goals for the team.

While it’s likely that The Heat will hang around these first-round picks before any of the inexpensive young rotation players are available, it’s worth noting that Herro will be entering a contractual year and will be eligible for an extension into this season. He was great during the regular season, but struggled in the playoffs, dropping his average scoring by eight points (20.7 to 12.6 PPG) and making only 22.9% of his three throws.

The playoff performance – and the fact that Herro still has plenty of room to improve on defense – could put the Heat on pause as they enter negotiations over a four-year extension of their junior range that could exceed $100 million. Pat Riley I’ve always resisted the idea of ‚Äč‚Äčtaking on Herro and wouldn’t expect a sudden turnaround in that situation this summer, but if the right player is on the market, I don’t think Herro should be outlawed – moving him now could do rather than invest heavily in his next contract. to Miami’s long-term benefit.

One or more of the four Hit players on non-guaranteed contracts – Strus, Vincent, Yurtseven and Heywood Highsmith – It could theoretically be added to the trade pack, but I expect all fours to come back. Strus and Vincent, in particular, are the latest development success stories for the Heat and will be big deals next season, helping to offset the cost of higher-priced veterans like Butler, Adebayo and Lowry.

After impressively taking on a power forward role in his first year in Miami, Tucker has the opportunity to cancel his contract and become the new free agent. He and Hitt looked like they fit well in 2021/22, so I wouldn’t expect Tucker to reject his player’s option to jump ship, but to reject the option and sign a new one-plus-one contract (potentially with a slight increase) in his best interests. As good as Tucker was last season, he’s 37 and could start to show real signs of regression soon, so this could be his last chance to sign with more than minimal.

If the Heat re-sign Tucker at a price similar to his and retains their first-round pick, they would still have about $13 million in breathing room below the luxury tax line to fill the three or four remaining spots on the list.

Victor Oladipo Martin are two candidates to return and fill two of those positions on the roster, but negotiating a new deal with Martin could prove difficult, as Miami only retains his non-bird rights. This means The Heat will only be able to make more than $2.25 million for the 2022/23 season if they are willing to indulge in a mid-level exception to increase their bid. Miami may decide that using some mid-level exceptions to re-sign Martin is the best way to maximize the value of the MLE, but if the team has the mid-level money set aside for an outside target, Martin is unlikely to return.

Since The Heat have the rights to Oladipo Bird, they have more flexibility to give him a raise. Whether or not he returns will come down to how much interest he attracts from rival suitors and perhaps how well Miami is willing to go into tax, depending on what other moves are made.

Set salary cap

Note: Our salary cap numbers are based on journals latest projection ($122 million) for 2022/23.

Guaranteed salary

Player Options

Team Options

Unsecured salary

Restricted Free Agents

Free agents in two directions

Draft Choices

  • No. 27 Total Choice ($2,209,920)
  • Total: $2,209,920

Players Eligible for Extension

Note: These are players who are already eligible for an extension or will become eligible before the start of the 2022/23 season.

  • Tyler Hero (bullish scale)

Unrestricted Free Agents/Other Capital Holdings


Assuming The Heat would keep all of its players on non-guaranteed contracts, it would be at around $126 million for nine players, so they’d definitely work over the limit. That would leave them about $23 million in wiggle room below the expected tax line ($149 million) for the remaining five or six list positions.

If Tucker and/or Oladipo come back and the Heat use a good chunk of their mid-level exception, that room for maneuvering will quickly disappear, but the club certainly has the flexibility to stay away from taxes if that is a top priority.

Roof Exceptions Available

  • Mid-level exception: $10,349,000 6
  • Semi-annual exception: $4,050,000 6
  • Commercial exception: $1,782,621


  1. Strus’ salary will be fully guaranteed after June 29th.
  2. Vincent’s salary will be fully guaranteed after June 29th.
  3. Yurtseven’s salary will be fully guaranteed after June 29.
  4. Highsmith’s salary will become partially guaranteed at $50K on July 1, with that partial guarantee increased to $400,000 after the first game of the regular season.
  5. The cover that Mickey and Wade have on the Heat books remains from previous seasons because they haven’t been abandoned. It cannot be used in a signature or trading transaction.
  6. here they are expected Value. If the heat approaches or exceeds the tax limit, they may not have access to the full mid-level exception and/or the semi-annual exception, and instead will be limited to the mid-level taxpayer exception ($6,392,000).

Salary information and maximum of Basketball Insiders And the RealGM It was used to create this post.