With the NBA investigating the timing of the sign-and-trade transaction utilized by the Miami Heat to land free-agent guard Kyle Lowry from the Toronto Raptors, several mitigating factors would appear to stand in the Heat’s favor.
More Rumors in this Storyline
According to an NBA party familiar with the league’s tampering investigation, the Heat’s maneuvering for Lowry differs significantly from the timing of the Chicago Bulls’ sign-and-trade acquisition of New Orleans Pelicans free-agent guard Lonzo Ball, which ESPN reports the NBA also is investigating.
At the time, the Raptors laid out potential parameters for a trade, an NBA source confirmed to the South Florida Sun Sentinel, with it also clear at the time what the financial parameters would be to sign Lowry in free agency. Lowry ultimately agreed to a three-year, $85 million contract that starts at $27 million this coming season.
Aware of those parameters, the Heat last Sunday picked up the 2021-22 $19.4 million team option on the contract of veteran guard Goran Dragic, with that contract along with the contract of neophyte center Precious Achiuwa utilized as matching salaries for the Lowry acquisition. The advance work on the Lowry possibility at the NBA trading deadline was in marked contrast to the sign-and-trade agreement between the Bulls and Pelicans for Ball, with no trade consideration in that case at the trading deadline.
Keith Smith: No options for Kyle Lowry in his new deal with the Miami Heat: 21-22: $26,984,128 22-23: $28,333,334 23-24: $29,682,540 All three seasons are fully guaranteed. @spotrac
The NBA has opened up investigations into possible tampering violations involving two sign-and-trade deals completed in free agency, Chicago’s acquisition of New Orleans’s Lonzo Ball and Miami’s acquisition of Toronto’s Kyle Lowry, sources told ESPN on Saturday. The NBA’s probe will examine illegal contact among teams and players ahead of the opening of free agency on Monday at 6 p.m. ET, sources told ESPN. Team executives, players agents and players have been notified of the opening of the league office’s investigations, sources said.
Marc Stein: It is difficult to envision the NBA invalidating Miami’s sign-and-trade deal for Kyle Lowry or Chicago’s expected acquisition of Lonzo Ball, but the penalties for wrongdoing — if proven — would have to be much stiffer than what Milwaukee faced in the Bogdan Bogdanovic case.
Marc Stein: Milwaukee was only fined $50,000 and docked a future second-round pick in large part because the Bucks, remember, did not get Bogdanovic in the end. If impermissible contact is proven in this summer’s cases, wrist slaps won’t cut it.
Just before the start of the 2019-20 season, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver addressed tampering and increased penalties for violating league rules. “We already have rules on the books,” Silver said, “and essentially the league was coming in at the direction of our teams and saying — and I’ll accept responsibility — you need to do a better job enforcing the rules that are already on your books and do a better job ensuring that there is a culture around the league where people believe there are absolute consequences if you don’t play by the rules.”
Adrian Wojnarowski: Reporting with @RamonaShelburne on ESPN: The NBA has opened up investigations into possible tampering violations involving two sign-and-trade deals completed in free agency: New Orleans and Chicago centered on Lonzo Ball, and Toronto and Miami centered on Kyle Lowry. Story soon.
Adrian Wojnarowski: NBA is expected to examine early contact on those deals ahead of the opening of free agency at 6 PM ET on Monday, sources tell ESPN.
Aaron Rose: Almost makes you think Precious Achiuwa is coming to the Raptors in a sign-and-trade for Kyle Lowry pic.twitter.com/tQ0N3MJCxw
Anthony Chiang: A reminder: The NBA’s moratorium period ends at noon tomorrow, after which deals can of officially be signed. As of earlier today, the machinations of the Kyle Lowry sign-and-trade transaction were still being worked out.
The Kyle Lowry sign-and-trade to Miami isn’t in doubt, but it appears the reason it hasn’t been officially completed yet is that Toronto is now trying to re-home Goran Dragic. In statements to the media, Dragic expressed a desire to join the Mavericks and play with Luka Doncic, something Dallas is known to be interested in as well. To join as a third team in that deal, Dallas would have to send at least $14.4 million in salary to Toronto, something most easily done by combining Dwight Powell and Willie Cauley-Stein. But that’s also where it gets complicated.
Dallas wouldn’t want to do that because Powell is beloved around the organization, and losing two centers in the same transaction would thin the team’s depth. The Mavs also don’t want to replace Cauley-Stein with one of their prospects in Josh Green or Tyrell Terry. But Toronto likely views Dragic, a proven veteran on an expiring deal, as a positive asset. Dallas wants him, so why shouldn’t it give something up? That’s the current limbo it’s easy to imagine both teams in right now. One possible solution is Dallas finding an expendable player Toronto does want and using a recently acquired trade exception (TPE) to bring something more conducive to the Raptors’ likings.
Marc Stein: Heartfelt goodbye to Heat fans from Goran Dragic in anticipation of the sign-and-trade deal that will send him to Toronto in exchange for Kyle Lowry:
Adrian Wojnarowski: Kyle Lowry has agreed to a three-year deal for approximately $90M with the Miami Heat, sources tell ESPN.
Shams Charania: Kyle Lowry is signing with the Miami Heat.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Three-year deal in a sign-and-trade for Kyle Lowry, source tells ESPN.
Kyle Lowry tweets announcement that he’s signing with the Heat.
Vincent Goodwill: Kyle Lowry is expected to sign a three-year deal with the Miami Heat via sign and trade with the Toronto Raptors, sources tell @YahooSports
NBA Central: “Everything is in place when we hit 6 o’clock eastern to get moving on a Kyle Lowry deal to the Miami Heat.” – @Adrian Wojnarowski pic.twitter.com/w31rY69ZTn
Lowry and Butler have been known to be close dating back to their shared experience with Team USA during the 2016 Olympics. And the moment Miami picked up Goran Dragic’s $19.4 million team option for the 2021-22 season, league personnel began to pencil Lowry into South Beach. “It’s so indicative of a sign-and-trade incoming,” said one Western Conference executive.
Dragic appears likely to head to Toronto in such an agreement, which sources around the league expect to include Precious Achiuwa. There is a belief among rival executives that both Dragic and Achiuwa could be rerouted elsewhere in subsequent trades. And while the Heat still seem focused on finding a path to bring on DeMar DeRozan as well, that does not sound like a requirement for Lowry to join Miami.
Marc Stein: Miami’s status as the favorite to land Kyle Lowry was only enhanced by the decision to pick up Goran Dragic’s option for next season, league sources say. A sign-and-trade with Toronto for Lowry centered around Dragic’s $19.4MM deal for next season is an obvious route to a deal.
Barry Jackson: As we and others have written, and the great Woj reiterated today, Lowry remains Heat high priority target. Looms as Heat/Pelicans/Mavericks battle, with Knicks and 76ers also potentially in play. The decision to exercise Dragic option suggests Toronto might be OK taking him back
Adrian Wojnarowski: As the Miami Heat create salary cap space, Toronto free agent guard Kyle Lowry remains a firm target in free agency, sources tell ESPN. Miami has more levers to pull to create space to sign Lowry outright — or can still endeavor to work a sign-and-trade with the Raptors.
Zach Lowe: I heard the Lakers were adamantly opposed to — ‘We are not hardcapping ourselves, we’re just not doing that to our in-season flexibility, we want to maintain our options’. And that precludes Kyle Lowry being signed and traded — anyone you want to sign and trade to the Lakers, it precludes from happening.
The Philadelphia 76ers, who have been exploring trade possibilities with Simmons in recent weeks, are also expected to be in the Lowry sweepstakes via a sign-and-trade with the Raptors, who have expressed a willingness to do so if they can’t keep their franchise guard, sources say.
The Sixers and Heat were unable to secure trades for him this past season. At that time, the Raptors’ asking price was too steep. Lowry also wanted some indication that his potential destination would be willing to provide a two-year extension of at least $25 million per year, sources said. He made $30 million in the final year of his Raptors deal. Apparently, his salary demands haven’t changed. A league source confirmed that Lowry’s free-agency asking price is $90 million over three seasons.
Not only is he a six-time All-Star, Lowry knows how to run a team. He’s a winner, a leader, and possesses a toughness that would benefit the Sixers. Adding him to the mix with Joel Embiid and Tobias Harris would put the Sixers in great position to advance to the NBA Finals. “If there’s a sign-and-trade [with the Sixers] that can be done that can get him there, and he gets $25 to $30 million, he will consider it,” a source said.
Namely, these conversations have so far revolved around Kyle Lowry, Mike Conley and Paul himself if he opts out of his contract with the Suns. According to sources, the Mavericks, looking to ease the burden on Luka Doncic, have shown interest in both Conley and Lowry, the latter of whom stands to have his pick of money and championship contender — and potentially both.
NBA Central: Adrian Wojnarowski expects a ‘big market’ for Kyle Lowry “You’re talking potentially $25 million-$30 million a year for Kyle Lowry, it’s going to be expensive to get at him in free agency or sign-and-trade.”
Kyle Lowry: Today was a crazy day but the love I got from everyone has been amazing thank you all for making it known I’m loved and for all the birthday wishes !!! #ageless😂😂 instagram.com/p/CM3Oijhl8Ts/…
Adrian Wojnarowski: In making trade offers for Kyle Lowry, teams had to take into consideration whether he would turn out to be a rental for the season — or if they would be able to meet his contract expectations to stay in free agency. That impacted how far teams were willing to go on him.
Adrian Wojnarowski: In the end, Masai Ujiri didn’t find a package that compelled him to trade Kyle Lowry — and Lowry had always been fine with completing the season with the Raptors, sources tell ESPN. Now, Lowry can head to free agency in the summer.
Tim Reynolds: Confirming: There is an agreement between the Rockets and the Heat. @Adrian Wojnarowski first … and Miami was in on Lowry all the way to the end. Victor Oladipo gets what he has wanted for a long time. He’s joining the Heat.
Adrian Wojnarowski: The Raptors are keeping Kyle Lowry, source tells ESPN.
Anthony Chiang: ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne said Duncan Robinson texted her earlier on trade deadline day: “I don’t know if I should take my pregame nap.” Robinson seems to be at the center of the Heat’s trade offer for Kyle Lowry.
Marc Stein: After the 76ers acquired George Hill, one source close to the Kyle Lowry talks said it was “too strong” to rule them all the way out of the Lowry chase — saying only that Philly’s chances had lessened.
Ira Winderman: ESPN’s Windhorst says Raptors now soliciting final offers for Lowry, 15 minutes from deadline.
David Hardisty: Brian Windhorst says the Miami Heat and Toronto Raptors are playing a game of Chicken on Kyle Lowry. That’s holding up this market.
The Jump: “The feeling is that the Raptors are in a box here and teams are not willing to bend” – @Brian Windhorst #NBA #NBATwitter #TheJump #WeTheNorth
The word is that the Lakers are still talking to Toronto (via ESPN). My sources there say the Lakers have definitely shown interest (nothing new there). One thing to consider — the Raptors aren’t really going into a full rebuild. Dennis Schroder/Fred VanVleet/Pascal Siakam/OG Anunoby/Chris Boucher….that’s got to be appealing to them, especially if Miami won’t include Tyler Herro. Would be fascinating if the Lakers don’t do the deal because of THT. If that’s the case, they’d have to believe Talen can help them win now and will be REALLY good in the future.
Stadium: “The Raptors are seriously engaged with the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat on a trade to move Kyle Lowry out.” Watch the “Shams Cam” LIVE for updates from our #NBA Insider @ShamsCharania :
Steve Popper: Don’t know if anything comes of it but hearing Knicks could be involved in using cap space in facilitating a Lowry deal if Toronto sends him to Lakers.
Nets Daily: Woj: Philly out for Kyle Lowry.
The veracity of reports coming from all corners of the league has been questioned by multiple sources who spoke with PhillyVoice on the condition of anonymity. The widespread belief is that Masai Ujiri is trying to spark a bidding war among the contenders interested in Lowry’s services, with the offers more restrained than the Raptors were and are hoping for.
Meanwhile, the Sixers are believed to be the frontrunners for the veteran guard’s services. According to Windhorst, Kyle Lowry is “preparing to be traded to the 76ers” on Thursday after the Raptors let teams know who the leaders in the Lowry race are. “The Toronto Raptors have let people know this morning that the two teams in the lead for Kyle Lowry are the Philly 76ers and the Lakers, with Philly in first position right now. That puts the Heat in third place. Kyle Lowry is preparing to be traded to the 76ers.
Kyle Neubeck: The Sixers do not see themselves as the current leader in discussions for Lowry, and are continuing to pursue other trade options as we approach the deadline, according to league sources
Aaron Rose: The 76ers and Lakers are in the lead for Lowry, per Windhorst
Most recently the Los Angeles Lakers have reportedly emerged as one of the teams interested in acquiring Kyle Lowry via a trade. However, NBA insider Brian Windhorst does not believe there is substance to such reports. Instead, he thinks that the rumor was facilitated by Lowry’s current team the Toronto Raptors. “Yesterday there were some rumors going around that the Los Angeles Lakers were interested in trading for Kyle Lowry as well. Frankly, I don’t believe that it’s true,” Windhorst said on ESPN’s First Take. “I think that’s a smokescreen thrown up by Toronto because they’re trying to get better offers out of Miami and Philadelphia.
Michael Grange: Hearing the Sixers are making a late push here for Lowry. ‘On the 1-yard line’ ...
NBA Central: The Miami Heat are offering Duncan Robinson for Kyle Lowry, per @Brian Windhorst Tyler Herro is still not in the offer. pic.twitter.com/Sdur4pAQSt
Justin Grasso: A couple of notes from @Brian Windhorst just now: – #Raptors aren’t thrilled with offers for Lowry right now – #Heat and #Sixers are really the only two involved, #Lakers interest is “smokescreen” – TOR wants Maxey, Thybulle, 2 first rd picks
As trade deadline day gets going, here is what I am hearing around Kyle Lowry, according to sources: Toronto is seriously engaged with Miami, Philadelphia and the Lakers on a potential deal. The Raptors are expected to canvass interest in their franchise staple as the deadline nears and decide whether the best offer meets their price tag.
Up until recently, the chances of a Lowry trade seemed slim. As of last week, the Raptors were still telling inquiring teams that they did not intend on moving their point guard ahead of the deadline, and according to sources, Lowry and his representatives fully expected him to finish the season with Toronto before hitting unrestricted free agency this summer. While the Raptors have not been soliciting offers for Lowry, as multiple reports have indicated, they’ve become more inclined to listen over the past few days, with the Miami Heat and Philadelphia 76ers emerging as frontrunners to land the 15-year vet if he is in fact moved.
It will hinge on a few factors. For one, what does Lowry want? He doesn’t have a no-trade clause, but with all the goodwill and mutual respect built up between player and franchise, the Raptors want to do right by him. They’re also not going to trade him just because they can, especially if he’s content playing out the season. It could be standard day-before-the-deadline posturing, but as of Wednesday night, sources confirmed that both Miami and Philly have been reluctant to push their chips in and make their best offers.
The prideful competitor left the floor. Toronto Raptors guard Kyle Lowry saw a camera tracking him as he walked through the entrance tunnel. Lowry held out two fingers with both of his hands and waved, an image that may have represented his final moment as a Raptors player on the eve of the NBA trade deadline. “Usually I (BS) y’all. But it was kind of weird tonight not knowing what the next step would be,” Lowry said following the Raptors’ 135-111 win over the Denver Nuggets on Wednesday. “Just with understanding there are things that could possibly be done on the front of me and the other guys on our team and the organization.”
Tim Bontemps: Kyle Lowry has insisted he doesn’t know what’s going to happen between now and 3pm tomorrow throughout his more than 20-minute media session tonight, but it certainly felt like the last time he will speak as a Toronto Raptor. We’ll find out over the next 16 hours if that’s true.
Josh Lewenberg: Kyle Lowry: “I’m going to be honest, usually I bulls*** y’all, but it was kinda weird tonight not knowing what the next step will be… Who knows what’s going to happen? I don’t know what’s going to happen but tonight was definitely different.”
Lori Ewing: Nick Nurse, when asked if this might be his last game coaching Lowry/Powell, said “99.9 per cent of (trade rumours) is non-truth.” Says he approaches every game like it’s his last time coaching all of the players.
Add Raptors shooting guard Norman Powell to the list of persons of interest for the Knicks before Thursday’s trade deadline. While the Raptors are shopping point guard Kyle Lowry, the Knicks have much more interest in Powell, who is expected to opt out to become an unrestricted free agent following the season.
Jake Fischer: Of note regarding the Kyle Lowry-Lakers rumors: It seems Los Angeles became open to discussing all of Dennis Schroder, Montrezl Harrell and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope with rival teams as of Monday night, and that chatter has not since quieted among league executives.
The Jump: “The Heat and Sixers are leaders in the clubhouse for Kyle Lowry. He wants assurances for which ever team he goes to” – MacMullan #NBA #NBATwitter #TheJump #WeTheNorth pic.twitter.com/ueWa8wXTn3
The Jump: “The Raptors are on the verge of a monumental moment in franchise history maybe trading the greatest players in franchise history in Kyle Lowry. This may go all the way to the wire” – @Zach Lowe #NBA #NBATwitter #TheJump #WeTheNorth
Kevin O’Connor: (The Raptors) aren’t even sure they want to trade Lowry. Toronto is split in their front office whether to deal him or not, which is why it’s a thing that comes down to Lowry and Masai Ujiri more than anybody else
Philadelphia and Miami have engaged Toronto on Lowry, and league sources say there are several more teams in both the Eastern and Western Conferences giving Toronto president Masai Ujiri and general manager Bobby Webster reason to weigh the possibility of accepting a return of future assets instead of leaning on Lowry for one final playoffs run.
A trade to the Sixers would represent a return home, but Lowry has had an open mind about a number of potential destinations, sources said. Lowry doesn’t have veto power over a trade, but Raptors management is taking into consideration Lowry’s wishes, given his monumental role in the franchise’s rise to perennial playoff contention, a 2019 NBA Championship and his place in Canadian sporting lore.
The Sixers and Miami Heat are having talks with the Toronto Raptors to acquire the six-time All-Star point guard in a trade. However, Lowry, 34, wants some indication that a potential destination is willing to give him a two-year extension at a minimum $25 million a year, according to sources. He’s making $30 million in the final year of his Raptors deal.
The Raptors would like Sixers rookie guard Tyrese Maxey or second-year shooting guard Matisse Thybulle included in a package for Lowry. However, a league source said the Sixers aren’t willing to part ways with Thybulle, one of the league’s best young defenders.
Storyline Hype Rumor visits per day for the last week
Views per day
September 18, 2021 | 9:28 pm EDT Update
The Houston Rockets have waived forward Tyler Bey. This waiver was necessary to create the roster spot for Houston to re-sign Dante Exum. The Rockets signed Bey to a fully non-guaranteed training camp contract in late-August.
September 18, 2021 | 5:41 pm EDT Update
You’re here for at least the next five years now that you’ve signed an extension. Do you allow yourself to think – or dream – about what might come over that time span since you’ve talked openly about wanting to win a title in New York? Have you allowed yourself to think about how things might progress? Julius Randle: Obviously, it’s a process. Everything is a process. We’ve been building this from the ground up. But for me, personally, that is the expectation (winning a title in New York). That’s what I want to happen within that time frame. There’s a lot of things, factors that go into that. So obviously you’ve got to weigh that stuff in.
Julius Randle: But as far as myself, I know Thibs (Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau) is thinking (it as well), it’s just win at all costs. For me personally, that’s just how I prepare myself. I prepare myself to compete at the highest level of our game. Like I said, there’s a lot of factors (that go into winning an NBA title). But I trust Leon (Knicks president Leon Rose), I trust Thibs, Wes (Knicks vice president William Wesley), our coaches, Scott (Knicks GM Scott Perry) – all these guys, I trust. That was part of my process in thinking of signing the extension and that’s my goal, that’s our goal as a team and the guys that are around us. We want to be able to say that we won a championship here in New York. I don’t think there’s any better feeling than that.
Did you guys see the video clip of Trae Young at the Garden with WWE? Do you care about that stuff? Julius Randle: Yeah I see it. But honestly, I don’t care. Obviously, that’s (for) entertainment purposes and all that (stuff), so I let people enjoy it. For me, honestly, I don’t care. I honestly didn’t even watch it. Knicks fans, they’re going to make a big deal out of it – they didn’t like it (laughs). But it’s all fun and games and hopefully they enjoyed it.
September 18, 2021 | 12:10 pm EDT Update
The Rockets have officially re-signed guard Dante Exum and waived Tyler Bey to create a roster space for him, according to the NBA’s transactions log. Hoops Rumors’ JD Shaw was the first to report the Bey transaction (Twitter link). With John Wall not expected to play for the team this season as it seeks to trade him, the Rockets were in the market for another point guard. The Rockets’ interest in Exum surfaced on Tuesday.