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Heat Trying To Trade Up, Land Shabazz Napier

The Heat are attempting to trade up from the 26th overall pick to land Shabazz Napier, reports Chad Ford of (Twitter link). LeBron James believes the former Connecticut Huskie is the best point guard in the draft, according to Ford, suggesting the soon-to-be free agent is heavily influencing Miami’s thinking on this front. The Heat, with little available trade assets given that Norris Cole is the team’s only player on a guaranteed contract for next season, will try to package Cole and the 26th pick to move into the late teens, Ford tweets. The Heat are open to a number of scenarios, including trading their pick for a veteran, Grantland’s Zach Lowe reports (on Twitter).

Heat president Pat Riley is, like James, a fan of Napier’s, Ford writes in his full piece. He flew to meet Napier and work him out right after the Finals and tried to convince him to halt his workouts with other clubs to enhance the chances of him falling to No. 26, according to Ford. That almost certainly won’t happen, as the Magic, who hold the 12th pick, as well as the Hawks (15th), Bulls (16th and 19th), and Celtics (17th) are giving serious consideration to drafting Napier, Ford hears, adding that it’s unlikely he slides past the Raptors at No. 21.

The Heat have the non-guaranteed contract of Justin Hamilton to throw into their proposal, but every other player is ineligible, since they all either have pending options or are entering free agency. They wouldn’t be able to officially give up the No. 26 pick in a trade until they use it to select a player on Thursday, since they’ve already traded away next year’s first-rounder.

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6 thoughts on “Heat Trying To Trade Up, Land Shabazz Napier

  1. Kevin6CD

    LeBron thinks Shabazz is better than Payton, Smart, Exum and Ennis? Yeesh.

    • Rhymes with Cryin' Bud

      Shabazz most likely isn’t going to become a Hall of Famer, but who wouldn’t want him on their team and why not?

      • Kevin6CD

        I didn’t say I wouldn’t want him on my team, but suggesting he’s the best PG in the draft class is hilarious. Can make an argument about Ennis, and maybe Payton, but at this point it would be hard to say he’s going to be better than Exum and Smart.

        • Rhymes with Cryin' Bud

          That’s fair, I missed that subtle distinction.

          • Kevin6CD

            Yeah, I think Napier’s alright, just wouldn’t be my first pick. Although thinking further into it, his three point shooting is probably better than all of the guys I mentioned. So he’s probably the best fit for what Miami’s looking for.

          • Rhymes with Cryin' Bud

            Yeah, that’s really where I was coming from. For the Heat, he’s the best possible option.

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