Utah Jazz: Could Mitchell be Sent to Miami?

Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports)
Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports) /

Another day with more trade rumors surrounding the Utah Jazz and star shooting guard Donovan Mitchell. Mitchell has not yet demanded a trade out of Utah, so the organization can take it slow and seek the most assets for their young guard.

According to Shams Charania of The Athletic (subscription required), the Miami Heat are one of the newest teams to engage the Utah Jazz in trade conversations. Last season, Miami lost to the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference Finals in a grueling seven-game series. Acquiring Mitchell could be the move that takes them over the edge. Giving up significant draft capital for a chance to compete for and win NBA championships has been an up-and-coming trend in the NBA. The Clippers, Nets, and Timberwolves have all given up at least four first-round picks in the last few years to acquire a star to take them to the next level. Could Miami be next to do so?

So far, President Danny Ainge’s asking price has been six first-round picks, but only the New York Knicks can propose a package consisting of that, and they already declined Utah’s offer. With all but one of their picks in the next seven years and plenty of young talent on their roster, Miami can offer a mix of young talent and draft capital that others cannot, giving them a chance to land the Utah star.

Miami’s trade package will go one of two ways. 

The foundation of Miami’s first offer is Duncan Robinson. He may not be the most enticing player the Heat have to offer, but his almost $17 million cap hit is necessary to balance the two team’s caps. Next are first-round picks. Miami can offer up to four first-round picks, so Utah will be looking to acquire as many as Miami are willing to give up. The final piece Miami adds is where the negotiations begin.

Miami are in a position where they have to give up either Tyler Herro or Victor Oladipo to balance salary caps. Utah will almost certainly ask for Herro, who is younger and has a much higher ceiling over the remaining years of their career. Herro could be the player that Utah looks to build around as they enter a rebuild. After winning 6th Man of the Year honors this past season, Herro might be looking to take that next step in his career and be the number one option on a Utah Jazz team, instead of being overshadowed by Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo.

In addition to Herro, the Jazz will need one of Ömer Yurtseven and Haywood Highsmith to balance the cap, which the Heat will be doing to do if they can reach an agreement with the Jazz.

If the Heat are willing to give up Herro in this package, I envision them only willing to part ways with two or three of their first-round picks, a number not up to the haul Utah has been asking for. Could the addition of Herro be enough to get Utah to accept? If the Heat are not willing to give up Herro they can give up Oladipo, Miami will likely ask for all four first-round picks.

The second package I see Miami proposing is centered around Kyle Lowry. The Heat told Lowry he would not be included in a trade package for Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving, but this deal is with Utah, not Brooklyn. Lowry’s $28.33 million cap hit in 2023 is just $2 million less than Mitchell’s $30.35 million, so a one-for-one deal would balance the salary caps. Miami will need to include all four of their future first-round picks, as Lowry does not have much value on his own for Utah.

Lowry is an interesting piece for the Jazz, who do not need the aging point guard contributing to their rebuild. It is likely that if the Jazz were to acquire Lowry he would be traded soon after. A three-team trade where a third team acquires Lowry and gives draft capital to Utah is the most plausible scenario. Another first-round pick and maybe a young player or two from this potential third-team will get Utah close to its six first-round picks’ asking price.

Utah Jazz: The Raptors made a call for Donovan Mitchell. dark. Next

After the Knicks rejected Utah’s trade for Mitchell, it is unknown what direction the Jazz organization is now taking. However, as rumors continue to circulate around the league, it is looking like Mitchell’s time in Utah is coming to an end. Where he will end up is unknown, but Miami are an appealing trade partner for the Jazz.