On a recent episode of ESPN’s The Lowe Post podcast, Zach Lowe intimated that everyone on the Miami Heat’s roster could be had via trade—even Hassan Whiteside.
The news was a revelation. Goran Dragic’s name has meandered in and out of the rumor mill, but that’s to be expected. He turns 31 in May; he and the Heat are no longer operating on the same timeline.
Whiteside is only 27, and he can be considered even younger in NBA years given that he doesn’t yet have 5,000 career minutes to his name after spending the first part of his career dropping in and out of the Association. Considering that he’s continued to record gaudy stat lines and serve as a viable defensive talent on a Heat squad devoid of safety nets, you’d think the Heat would want to build around him rather than move him.
And that’s apparently the case, according to the Miami Herald‘s Barry Jackson:
I have not independently confirmed that Whiteside is available, and no other NBA reporter is reporting that. ESPN’s Marc Stein said the Heat has a very high asking price for Goran Dragic, diminishing the chances of a trade.
This is the second Heat trade report in recent weeks. The Heat vehemently denied Chris Mannix’s report that Miami had spoken to Sacramento about a trade involving Dragic.
UPDATE: A Heat spokesperson said Tuesday night that Whiteside is not available in trade discussions.
This is a very loose rebuke of Lowe’s report. A spokesperson implies this is someone who’s tasked with putting out fires—the ones that anonymous sources with potentially legitimate intel start.
This isn’t to say Jackson’s information is bad. Nor can we discredit Lowe’s report. Both sides can be true.
Whiteside could be available for the right offer, and the Heat just aren’t actively seeking one. This is what can be said about roughly 75 percent of players in the league, irrespective of whether they’ve been mentioned in rumors.
Still, we shouldn’t hold our breath for a Whiteside trade. The market for big men is weird right now, and the Heat would have to be blown away by a proposal to deal a 27-year-old fringe star who might factor into their big picture. Dragic is the one who’s more likely to be on the move by February’s end.