10:14 pm: A team spokesperson denies the ESPN report, telling Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald (Twitter link) that the center is not available in trade talks.
9:45 pm: No player on the Heat is untouchable in trade talks, including Hassan Whiteside, Zach Lowe reports in his latest podcast. Lowe added that he believes the team is “open for business” regarding its willingness to shake things up.
It was previously reported that there’s a growing sense that the franchise will seriously explore moving Goran Dragic and other veterans prior to the deadline. However, Marc Stein of ESPN reported last week that the asking price for the point guard remains “too high to encourage any serious trade discussions.”
Whiteside signed a four-year, $98MM deal with Miami over the offseason and despite putting up impressive stats, he hasn’t been able to elevate the team in the win column. It remains to be seen what the team would want in return for the 27-year-old, though I speculate it would take at least an unprotected first-round pick or a promising player on a rookie deal to pry him from South Beach. The Blazers and Mavs were among the teams to show interest in the big man during free agency.
Miami currently owns the second spot in our Reverse Standings, which means if the season ended today, the franchise would have a 19.9% chance at the No. 1 overall pick in the draft. The Heat are in good position to angle for that top pick by executing a tanking strategy, though there has been no indication that they plan on taking that route at this time.