Miller and Webber: Miami must keep Richardson

Reggie Miller and Chris Webber would not trade Josh Richardson for Jimmy Butler. Speaking in a preseason conference call for Turner Sports, the former All-Stars were enthusiastic about Richardson, and cautious about what Miami should offer.

Miller said, “I personally love Josh Richardson, he’s a young stud in this league. I would not part ways if I’m Pat Riley and Micky Arison.”

Webber admitted that Butler in Miami would be fun to watch, but both were sceptical about any trade deal that would see Richardson leave the Heat.

Miller continued, “You’ve got Josh Richardson on a good deal of four years, $41 million. You’ve got Bam Adebayo on a rookie deal. Adebayo was a fantastic draft choice.”

“Jimmy Butler is a fantastic person, fantastic player, but his longevity because of some of the injuries that have occurred kind of scare me a little. Does it automatically make them in contention like Boston? You don’t say now it’s between Boston and Miami. It doesn’t make them seven games better, doesn’t make them favourites. I keep those young players and personally wouldn’t do the deal.”

Webber, like Miller, did not think that trading Richardson, Adebayo and a pick for Butler would be a good idea. The five-time All-NBA big man said, “I don’t know if it will give you five or seven more years of winning. I like those young guys in the locker-room. That would not be something I would do.”

The Butler saga has continued for several weeks and Miami remain one of the frontrunners. Minnesota, though, still have a high asking price for their veteran. Butler requested a trade several weeks ago and has not been a part of the team’s preseason preparations.

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Sam is a widely published freelance writer, covering basketball, baseball and a range of other sports. He's still trying to decide if he prefers a rundown shot block or a smooth double play. Twitter: @SamRCox_