Veteran forward P.J. Tucker has only played one season with the Heat, but that’s all he’s needed to make a positive impression on the team, Anthony Chiang of the Miami Herald writes. Tucker was an efficient two-way starter for the Heat this season, impressing coaches and teammates alike with his effort, leadership and passion.
“Man, I was surprised at just how hard and how consistent and just how tough P.J. is,” team captain Udonis Haslem said of Tucker. “There are very few guys that I feel like approach the game every night the way I did, you know what I’m saying. P.J. just happened to be one of them.”
Tucker fits well alongside Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo in the Heat’s frontcourt. At 6’6″ and 245 pounds, he’s versatile, strong defensively and owns championship experience. He also shot an efficient 41.5% from three-point range this season, which is important since Butler and Adebayo don’t thrive from distance.
Here are some other notes from Miami:
- In his latest “Ask Ira” mailbag, Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel examines whether it would make sense for the Heat to trade for Hawks star John Collins. Atlanta lost to Miami in five games during the first round, finishing its disappointing season with a 43-39 record. If the team explores Collins’ trade value, Miami could dangle Duncan Robinson‘s contract in discussions. It’s reasonable to assume Atlanta would target Tyler Herro in a potential deal.
- In a separate article for the Sun Sentinel, Ira Winderman explores whether Heat president Pat Riley has enough trade pieces to improve the roster. In addition to Herro, Miami also has young center Omer Yurtseven and multiple first-round picks at its disposal, including the No. 27 selection this year.
- Speaking of the Heat’s first-round pick, Anthony Chiang of the Miami Herald explores what it would take for the team to trade it. The Heat lost their second-rounder as a result of last year’s tampering investigation into the Kyle Lowry sign-and-trade, so the team currently has one pick in this year’s draft. Miami finished as the No. 1 seed this season and dealt with key injuries throughout the playoffs, losing to Boston in the Eastern Conference Finals 4-3.