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ASK IRA: Did NBA trading deadline further shrink the Heat down to size?

Q: The Heat were too small before the trading deadline and still are too small. – Wes.

A: The problem is the Heat already have four players on the roster, on the standard roster, who basically solely are centers, in Bam Adebayo, Kevin Love, Thomas Bryant and Orlando Robinson. And it’s not as any of them are going anywhere, with the trade deadline having passed. So you want a fifth center? And even then, would Erik Spoelstra play such a player ahead of Adebayo and Love? I’m not sure an upgrade is or will be available on the buyout market (especially now that Kelly Olynyk is staying in Toronto). But, yes, there remain ample matchups, including against the Celtics, 76ers and Bucks where this would appear problematic.

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Q: After the trading deadline, the national sports media basically said the Knicks are in the Eastern Conference finals. Doesn’t matter that the Cavaliers are playing great and New York hasn’t won a playoff series in twenty years. – Stuart, Miami.

A: Well, the Knicks did win in the first round last year against the Cavaliers . . . Look, the Knicks improved at the deadline, and arguably on paper have as much quality depth as anyone in the East outside of the Celtics. But playoff games or series aren’t won on paper. The Heat arguably were at a talent deficit in every playoff round last season and still won three of four. To go deep in the playoffs you have to have players with playoff resumes. That is what the Knicks lack at the moment. We first half to see what Playoff Julius Randle looks like this time around. That ultimately remains the Knicks’ swing vote.

Q: So here come the fans to crap all over no moves being made. Let’s be realistic for a second: Was there any deal out there better than what they got for Kyle Lowry’s expiring contract and a first-round pick? – Tee, Averne, New York.

A: The remains to be determined by what Terry Rozier does the balance of this season and going forward. And, yes, you could make an argument of a potential better deal, only because if the Heat held on to that first-rounder sent out, then there could have been a stronger package of picks in a potential bigger deal. But that’s not to say it was a bad deal. It’s basically TBD.