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Tyler Herro is NOT the Coal in Joe Cronin’s Stocking this Christmas

Miami Heat fans still seem caught up in the summer.

Miami Heat v Portland Trail Blazers Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images

The Damian Lillard trade saga was resolved way back in September. We’re in the thick of a new season. For Pete’s sake, it’s Christmas Eve! And yet, Miami Heat fans still can’t keep Portland Trail Blazers general manager Joe Cronin’s name out of their mouths.

In an article published today [subscription required], Heat reporter Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel answered a message from a gleeful Heat fan who was so happy Miami didn’t end up trading a Tyler Herro-centered package to the Blazers in exchange for NBA Top 75 player Damian Lillard.

In his response, Winderman echoed a lot of that same glee.

A: And that’s the thing about trades and trade rumors, sometimes you wind up singing a different song about maximizing the payoff for the Damian Lillard trade from the Blazers. As the song goes. “Don’t it always seem to go that you don’t know what you got ’til it’s gone?” Hmm, Robert Williams, Malcolm Brogdon and a few middling draft picks . . . or Tyler Herro, Jaime Jaquez Jr. and the possibility of a better pick pool from the Heat? Oh, and, yeah, Portland also got the indifference in the middle that is Deandre Ayton. Joe Cronin wouldn’t take the Heat’s calls. So the Trail Blazers general manager never truly could give Blazers ownership an accurate picture of what might be available. For the Heat, quite possibly a net grain, although also don’t underestimate what Damian Lillard might have meant for the Heat.

Typical of reporting from Miami’s side since the offseason, Winderman glosses over the haul of picks Portland got from Milwaukee and Boston as “middling” and calls Miami’s pick pool “better.” Those statements ring a little...inaccurate. But what struck me the most from the story was the headline:

ASK IRA: Is Heat’s Tyler Herro the coal in Joe Cronin’s Blazers’ stocking?

Heat fans and media, I assure you that Joe Cronin, or any basketball fans in Portland for that matter, aren’t losing sleep this Christmas over Tyler Herro. For the billionth time, Portland is already rebuilding around three young guards — Shaedon Sharpe, Scoot Henderson and Anfernee Simons — so Herro made no sense on this roster.

Simons, by the way, is averaging 26.9 points, 5.5 assists and 3 rebounds per game in 10 appearances this season. By comparison, on a more expensive contract, Herro is averaging 24.2 points, 4.4 assists and 5.3 rebounds per game in 11 appearances this season.

Yes, the gamble on Deandre Ayton hasn’t come up all roses so far, but he at least is a swing at a position of need and it’s still early in his tenure. Malcolm Brogdon is enjoying a solid campaign in Portland. As the reigning NBA Sixth Man of the Year, he’s sure to attract value on the trade market at February’s NBA Trade Deadline. Oh, and Portland got fan favorite and defensive menace Toumani Camara out of the summer dealings as well.

Firmly entrenched in the rebuild at 7-21, the Trail Blazers and their fanbase have moved on from the offseason Lillard sweepstakes and are looking ahead. Everybody on the Heat side should do the same.