The Miami Heat have agreed to a four-year, $130 million contract extension with reserve guard Tyler Herro, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and confirmed by CBS Sports’ NBA Insider Bill Reiter. Of that total figure, $120 million is guaranteed and the remaining $10 million with be available via incentives, according to Tim Reynolds of the Associated Press. Herro is the reigning Sixth Man of the Year award winner after averaging 20.7 points per game for the Eastern Conference’s No. 1 seed.
Despite that success a season ago, Herro’s postseason was largely disappointing. He averaged only 12.6 points per game while dealing with injuries that kept him out of most of the Eastern Conference Finals. Miami lost that series to the Boston Celtics. Afterward, Herro was the subject of trade rumors involving Kevin Durant and Donovan Mitchell, while Herro made it clear that he no longer wants to come off of the bench.
“I would like to start,” he said in his exit interview. “It’s my fourth year (next season), so I think I’ve earned it. We’ll see what happens.”
Heat president Pat Riley made it clear that Herro would need to earn a starting job by committing defensively.
“The next step for him — and I think we’re seeing this in the league — if you want to win a championship and you wanna be a starter, you really have to become a two-way player today,” Riley said in a media conference after the season. “You have to improve in certain areas of your game. … I saw improvement in his defense this year. He’s got great feet, he’s got quick feet. He just needs to get stronger, again. Add another 10 pounds of muscle mass. He just needs to get stronger from a leverage standpoint.”
Unclear in this extension is how the Heat will use Herro this season. The Heat are certainly paying him like a starter, but if Miami wants to use him as a reserve again, Herro suddenly has 130 million reasons to accept it. Either way, the Heat have locked up a player they consider part of their long-term core for the foreseeable future.