The Kyle Lowry era of Toronto Raptors basketball appears all but over, as the Miami Heat are closing in on a sign-and-trade that would bring Lowry to South Beach on a three-year, $90 million contract while sending veteran point guard Goran Dragic and 2020 first-round pick Precious Achiuwa to Toronto.
Lowry is joining a Heat team that already featured good friend Jimmy Butler, promising young big Bam Adebayo, and two shooters in Duncan Robinson and Tyler Herro. Lowry could be the missing ingredient on a team that ends up competing for a championship.
While the lucrative contract and chance to play alongside one of his very good friends in Butler likely helped convince Lowry of the benefits of playing in Miami, Lowry had to have made this move with the intention of chasing a championship. His skill set will fit in perfectly with what Miami wants to do.
As painful as it may be for Raptors fans to watch Lowry ply his trade elsewhere, this move could be a tremendous success for both player and team alike, as Lowry could be an ideal point guard for a Miami team trying to expunge the bad memories brought on by last year’s playoff exit.
3 things Toronto Raptors legend Kyle Lowry brings to the Miami Heat.
3. Perimeter Defense
While Lowry’s primary contribution on the floor for Toronto was his ability to orchestrate an offense, his unique build made him one of the best defensive point guards in the game. His ability to hound opposing guards and ignite a fast break with a steal should pair well with a gritty Miami team.
The Heat have two excellent defenders in Butler and Adebayo that will be sharing the floor for heavy minutes, Robinson is an average defender on his best day, and Herro was objectively poor in that area last year. In comes Lowry to save the day.
Kyle Lowry will improve the Heat’s stout defense.
With Adebayo able to check the opposing team’s best big man and the combination of Lowry, Butler, and new signing PJ Tucker making life hell on perimeter players, it will be a physical grind to go up against the Heat team. Raptors fans know all too well how valuable Lowry can be on that end.
How many key stops were made in postseason play by Lowry? How many shots were contested in clutch situations? Lowry might not put up the gaudiest steal numbers in the world, but that defense remains rock-solid, and it’s a huge reason why he earned the deal he got.