4 Miami Heat players who definitely won’t be back next season

Miami Heat (Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images)
Miami Heat (Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images) /
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With the Miami Heat eliminated from the NBA Playoffs, here are three players who won’t be coming back next season.

The Miami Heat triumphed through the NBA Playoffs as the underdogs to end all underdogs. While for a moment it looked like the world had crucially underestimated the Heat, motivating them to completely stomp out the Boston Celtics, Boston eventually did wake up and make it interesting, losing in seven.

Miami tackled every test thrown at them in the Eastern Conference but ultimately fell short to the Denver Nuggets who proved to be perhaps even more slept on than the Heat as the most talented and dominant team in the league. Denver won its first NBA title in just five games.

Miami, an 8-seed, went further than it should have based purely on seeding. Only one other team seeded that low (Knicks) has made it to the NBA Finals, and still, no team in such a position has won it all.

With that in mind, the Heat’s season is over, and it’s looking forward to the offseason. Miami has a relatively stable cast coming back next year, with Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo, Tyler Herro and (perhaps regretfully) Duncan Robinson all on the books for many years to come.

But some big names will likely not be back next year, and Pat Riley needs to start strategizing on how to fill those roles. Of course, this is the Heat. They’ll have no problem doing so, it just might take some creativity.

Honorable mention who will probably be back next year: Kevin Love

I could definitely see Kevin Love signing elsewhere in free agency. Retirement could certainly be on the table for the 34-year-old big man as well. More likely than both, though, is Love finding his way back to the Heat on a new deal for a year or two.

Love has collected his big checks in Cleveland for several years now. Then, he got to ring chase with Miami. He’s earned his money, and there’s nothing better to do at this stage in his career but play basketball and soak up the great weather in South Beach.

Miami seems to have a knack for taking on players who might otherwise be considered “washed up” and extending their careers. It’s gotta be the weather, right?