RJ Barrett More Valuable Trade Asset Than Tyler Herro?

RJ Barrett, Tyler Herro, Miami Heat, New York Knicks, NBA Trade Rumors
NBA Analysis Network

A lot of the focus in the NBA the last few weeks has been on what the Brooklyn Nets are going to do with Kevin Durant following his trade request. However, another All-Star could be hitting the trade market in the form of Donovan Mitchell of the Utah Jazz.

Utah has operated like a team that wants to rebuild this offseason. Trading Royce O’Neale to the Nets for a 2023 first-round pick and then the package they received for Rudy Gobert certainly looks more like a rebuild than retool on the fly.

However, there were some reports that the organization wanted to rebuild things around Mitchell and was turning away any trade calls for him. They have softened on that stance, as the situation has seemingly become fluid as Utah can go in either direction.

The Jazz is now listening to offers for Mitchell, but the asking price is very high. Should a team meet that price, they would likely pull the trigger. But, until they get what they are looking for, they are in no rush to move him.

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Two teams that have been mentioned as potential landing spots for the three-time All-Star are the New York Knicks and Miami Heat. A few months ago, it was believed that the Heat had the best package to offer built around Tyler Herro and draft picks. However, that may no longer be the case.

New York added three future first-round picks during the 2022 NBA Draft in a trade with the Oklahoma City Thunder to strengthen their pool of assets to dip into. The Knicks also have RJ Barrett that could be the centerpiece of a deal, who people around the NBA believe has more value than Herro.

“Utah’s appetite for Barrett as the key ingredient in a Mitchell trade is unclear,” Jake Fischer wrote at Bleacher Report. “But an unofficial B/R poll of over two dozen NBA executives at Summer League this week indicated Barrett boasts a greater trade value across the league than Miami’s best blue-chip prospect, Tyler Herro, by a wide margin, particularly because of Barrett’s improving strengths on the defensive end.”

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Tyler Herro may be more highly regarded by fans, as he won the Sixth Man of the Year award for the 2021-22 season. However, the impact on both ends of the court is what separates the players, as RJ Barrett is more well-rounded right now than Herro is.

The two-way potential that Barrett possesses could elevate him to perennial All-Star status. He has shown flashes of that level of performance throughout his first three seasons in the NBA and has gotten better every season.

His efficiency needs some work, as Barrett sometimes struggles to finish at the rim, and he needs to continue improving his playmaking to reach that next level. Having an improved supporting cast around him, as Jalen Brunson was signed in free agency, should help open things up for Barrett to score some easy baskets.

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If the Knicks can acquire Mitchell without parting ways with RJ Barrett, it would help him on his ascension as well. Being a second, third or fourth option, depending on who else is involved in the trade, will provide Barrett with even more efficient scoring opportunities.