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NBA • 7 min read • May 26, 2024

Adding Donovan Mitchell to the Miami Heat Would Create a Superteam

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After the CLEVELAND CAVALIERS 113-98 loss to the BOSTON CELTICS in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference semifinals, many have wondered about Donovan Mitchell's long-term future.  Despite reports from the Athletic that the Cavaliers are optimistic that Mitchell will sign a long-term extension, rumors continue to run rampant regarding a trade. According to ESPNs Zach Lowe, some of the teams that are expected to try and acquire Mitchell include the MIAMI HEAT and LOS ANGELES LAKERS

 

The noise surrounding a trade to the Heat has grown significantly since the report from ESPN. Hoops Wire Ashish Mathur reported source stated Cleveland would have interest in Tyler Herro and Jamie Jaquez in a potential trade with the Heat. Mitchell teaming up with Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo in South Beach creates a seismic shift in the power dynamic of the Eastern Conference. Miami would immediately become one of the favorites to win the championship next year.

 

 

A big three of Butler, Adebayo, and Mitchell stacks up well with the other star-studded teams in the East like the Celtics with Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, and Kristaps Porzingis or the MILWAUKEE BUCKS with Giannis Antetokounmpo, Damian Lillard, and Khris Middleton. Throughout the regular season, Miami was plagued by injuries and struggled to produce consistent offense. These issues were heightened in the Heat's first round loss to the Celtics , as Butler was sidelined by a MCL sprain he suffered in the play-in game against the PHILADELPHIA 76ERS

 

Butler's absence put the onus on Adebayo and Herro to be the teams’ main forms of scoring and playmaking. Adebayo proved up to the task and did all he could to keep Miami afloat.  Herro on the other hand struggled throughout the series, averaging 16.8 points per game, 5.4 assists, and 3.6 rebounds while shooting 38.5% from the field, and 34.9% from beyond the arc. While Herro’s assists and rebounds mirrored his regular seasons stats, his scoring and efficiency decreased significantly. 

 

The addition of Mitchell would be the remedy to the Heat's offensive struggles, providing a significant upgrade over Herro.

 

Donovan Mitchell 2H takeover ??

Spin to lay. Euro to float.

Has 23 of his 29 PTS in the 2nd half on ESPN ? pic.twitter.com/GGHVGxtXys

— NBA (@NBA) May 10, 2024

 

Against the same Boston team mentioned above in the second round of the playoffs, Mitchell averaged 31.7 points, 5.3 assists, and 6.3 rebounds while shooting 51.5% from the field and 53.3% from three-point range. If the Heat had Mitchell instead of Herro in this year's playoffs, they could have potentially upset the Celtics even with Butler out.

 

 

Trading for Mitchell provides Miami with another high level shot creator to alleviate the burden on Butler and Adebayo. This has been an issue for a while, with the Heat attempting to fix this issue last year with their pursuit of Lillard when he was a member of the PORTLAND TRAILBLAZERS.  Having Mitchell on the roster also helps offset some of the wear and tear on Butler that has become more prominent as he has gotten older. The question that some would ask is does Miami provide Mitchell a better chance at winning a championship then Cleveland? The answer is undoubtedly yes. 

 

Mitchell has played with many great star players in his career like Rudy Gobert, Mike Conley, Darius Garland, and Jarrett Allen. However, none of them have experienced the level of success Butler and Adebayo have in the postseason. Additionally, Mitchell has never had a coach of the pedigree and caliber of Erik Spoelstra. In his 11-year career. Spoelstra has gotten his teams to the NBA Finals six times and won two championships in that span. 

 

One negative aspect of this move is Butler at 34 is nearing the end of his career. However, Mitchell would still have another star to play with in Adebayo. And under team president Pat Riley, history has shown that if has at least two stars in South Beach, odds are a third will join at some point.  Currently Mitchells fate is still uncertain. If he joins the Heat, he would be in prime position to win a championship in the present and the future.