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#pounditSaturday, January 28, 2023

Heat could trade for hated rival player?

Erik Spoelstra looks on

Feb 20, 2020; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra on the sideline against the Atlanta Hawks in the second quarter at State Farm Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

The Miami Heat may be reaching across the aisle to their biggest NBA rivals.

Greg Sylvander of Five Reasons Sports reported this weekend that Boston Celtics forward Grant Williams is a player who is on the Heat’s trade radar. The 24-year-old Williams will be a restricted free agent after the season.

Williams is not a particularly well-liked opponent, especially by the Heat, who have faced him in the playoffs in two of the last three seasons. The former first-round pick is a mosquito of a player who loves getting underneath the skin of the opposition.

But by way of skillset, Williams would actually be a sharp fit on a Heat team that has had trouble replacing PJ Tucker at the 4. Williams is a versatile 6-foot-6 forward who fights and claws for extra possessions, blows up actions as a halfcourt defender, and cans his triples (shooting a career-best 45.8 percent from deep this season). That is exactly the kind of hard-working, blue-collar player that the Heat historically love.

At 11-12 on the year, Miami figures to be active ahead of the trade deadline in February. But if the Celtics decline to pick up the phone, the Heat could pursue a forward upgrade from another top team instead.

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