Heat and Thunder talk, but far apart on possible Paul trade

Veteran point guard Chris Paul was traded to the Thunder for Russell Westbrook.

The Miami Heat have a strong interest in Chris Paul, but don’t expect a deal anytime soon, according to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald.

Paul was traded from trhe Houston Rockets to the Oklahoma City Thunder this offseason in a deal that centered on Russell Westbrook.

While Paul has given no indication he wants out of OKC, the Heat reportedly like the idea of pairing Jimmy Butler with a standout point guard.

But Jackson reported that nothing is close.

“OKC thinks it’s giving the Heat a great asset and shouldn’t need to entice Miami,” Jackson wrote. “Miami greatly respects Paul but feels like it’s doing OKC favor (by taking Paul’s large contract) and should be compensated.”

The Heat are expected to wait to see how the early part of the season goes before re-opening talks with the Thunder, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic.

It was reported in July that the Heat would want draft picks to take on Paul’s contract.

“At this point, just as the Thunder wanted more in terms of prospects from the Heat for Westbrook, the Heat are seeking more than Oklahoma City is offering to offload a Paul contract that will pay the 34-year-old point guard $38.5 million this coming season, $41.4 million in 2020-21, with a player option of $44.2 million in 2021-22,” Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinal wrote.