With all the attention focused on Kevin Durant’s shrinking market, YES analyst Frank Isola raised the possibility that Kyrie Irving’s market may be expanding, that perhaps the Heat could be interested in Irving … for Kyle Lowry.
Isola responded to speculation from the Miami-based Dan Le Batard Show about whether Miami could get Irving on the cheap.
There was nothing definitive – or detailed – in either Isola’s tweet or Le Batard’s commentary, but Isola in particular is wired into the NBA with his YES gig as well as the work he does for ESPN and Sirius XM Radio. Previously, reports had Irving’s market limited to the Lakers and the New York Post reported two days ago that a source close to Irving said he intends to play in Brooklyn this season. Before Irving opted in, he reportedly gave the Nets six teams that he would prefer if negotiations failed. The Heat were among the six as were the Lakers, Clippers, Knicks, 76ers and Mavericks.
Lowry, 36, is six years older than Irving and a one-for-one trade doesn’t quite work. The Heat would have to add some salary – and no doubt pick (s) – to entice Brooklyn. Lowry makes $ 28.3 million this season and around .7 29.7 million in 2023-24 while Irving is on an expiring deal at 36.5 million.
The Villanova product had decent regular season considering his role in Miami, averaging 13.4 points on 44/38/85 shooting splits to go along with 7.5 assists. However, in the post-season, Lowry fell apart, averaging 7.8 points, shooting 29/24/78. He was troubled by a hamstring strain, but Heat Team President Pat Riley made it clear that he needed Lowry to be better conditioned.
“The bottom line with me and for me as far as hoping you can get the most out of a player,” Riley said. “You have to be in world class shape, you just have to be. He’s definitely gonna have to address that and it will be addressed. “
Lowry, a six-time All-Star and one-time All-NBA selection, won an NBA championship with the Raptors in 2018-19, a year where he sacrificed to give Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard the primary role in Toronto.