Miami Heat's Star-Hunting Tendencies Drawing Them To Donovan Mitchell?

May 11, 2024; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers guard Donovan Mitchell (45) reacts in the; Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports
May 11, 2024; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers guard Donovan Mitchell (45) reacts in the; Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports / David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

The Miami Heat may do everything in their power to acquire Cleveland Cavaliers star Donovan Mitchell after missing out on Damian Lillard and Bradley Beal in recent years.

Mitchell and the Cavs were eliminated from the postseason on Wednesday, marking a second straight early playoff exit. Most believe Mitchell, 27, is the sole reason Cleveland made it past the first round. The lack of support when it matters most could lead to him refusing to extend his contract past the 2026 season.

"I think if Donovan chose not to extend, he would be able to kind of direct the trade a little bit because of the one year on his contract," analyst Brian Windhorst said on an episode of ESPN's Get Up. "The Miami Heat have been star hunting for a year now. They're always star hunting. They have some players on their roster who would potentially be interesting to Cleveland, but not as deep in draft picks as others."

Mitchell's player option for the 2026 season is likely insignificant because he will either switch teams or extend his contract prior. The Heat should think twice before going all-in for the five-time All-Star due to the lack of success of front-loaded rosters. The Phoenix Suns Big Three had championship expectations this season but were swept in the first round, leaving their future in jeopardy.

There's no doubt Mitchell is one of the league's top shooting guards, averaging 26.6 points, 6.1 assists, and 5.1 rebounds on 46.2 percent shooting in 55 games last season. Tyler Herro, a young player (Jaime Jaquez Jr. or Nikola Jovic), and draft capital are a sufficient package, but holding onto depth is arguably more important for a team that has reached the NBA Finals twice since 2020.

Anthony Pasciolla works as a contributing writer to Inside the Heat. He can be reached at ampasciolla@gmail.com or follow him on Instagram @anthony.pasciolla.

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Anthony Pasciolla

ANTHONY PASCIOLLA

Anthony Pasciolla is a sports writer who has contributed to FanNation's Inside the Heat since June 2023. He also works as a contributing writer for Basketball News. He has experience in photography, content creation, and graphic design.