The Miami Heat have acquired guard Victor Oladipo from the Houston Rockets on Thursday before the trade deadline.
There has been a long mutual interest with Oladipo; privately, this is where he wanted to take his talents.
Oladipo is taking his talents to Miami with an expiring contract, significant injury in his past, and a drop in offensive efficiency. The Heat will take a close look as he auditions to see if they want to move forward with him and at what price.
“For me personally, I definitely fit in the Heat culture,” Oladipo said. “What they stood for, how they play, how they get after it.”
Oladipo has a lot to prove and a chance to do it with one of the best organizations that have the right pieces that will make them a tough out in the playoffs.
“I don’t know what the future brings, I don’t want to say one thing, and another happens, so I am going to take it one day at a time,” Oladipo added. “I am looking forward to playing with these guys. Everything that happened before is in the past. I have no control over that; I am focused on the here and now.”
In return, the Rockets get guard Avery Bradley, forward Kelly Olynyk, and 2022 first-round swap rights. Those swap rights include the Brooklyn Nets’ pick.
Oladipo, age 28, is in the final season of a four-year, $85 million contract and can become a free agent this summer. He ruptured his quad in January 2019. Oladipo has averaged 21.2 points in 20 games with the Rockets, although his efficiency has been up and down.
The two-time All-Star selection also has been a top defender, being named to the All-Defensive First Team in 2018, when he led the NBA in steals and also was named the league’s Most Improved Player.
Oladipo arrived in Houston as part of a four-team trade that delivered All-NBA guard James Harden to the Brooklyn Nets. The Rockets offered Oladipo a two-year, $45 million contract — the maximum offer that they were available to make during the season under the collective bargaining agreement — but Oladipo declined it, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported.
I am not jumping out of my seat about the fit. But when the cost is nothing, it is hard to complain about the decision. The sell will be how Oladipo fits with Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo.
Butler, Adebayo, Oladipo, and Andre Iguodola fit in the same boat. Good passers, versatile defensively, and reliable scoring.
“VO” was itching to be on South Beach the last two years. And the Heat took him for nothing. The next few months will be great to evaluate if he is worth resigning.
It was supposed to be the Bradley Beal or Giannis Antetokounmpo summer instead; it is the “Oladipo decision.”
The Heat’s roster is now one of the most versatile defensively with the addition of Trevor Ariza. I am worried about the shooting. Either they are looking to win with defense or fatally flawed on offense.