Sports

Tyler Herro is not in the same class as Luka Dončić or Trae Young

Tyler Herro

Tyler Herro
Photo: Getty Images

Yesterday, Miami Heat guard Tyler Herro made an appearance on a podcast and talked about how he views himself as an NBA talent. Herro responded claiming that he believes he should be in the conversation as the other young up-and-comers in the league with the potential to be All-Stars or superstars. That’s fair. I definitely believe Herro should be in that conversation. However, Herro doesn’t stop. He then proceeds to name some players he believes to be in that category, specifically Luka Dončić, Trae Young, and Ja Morant. Excuse me, what? Here’s the full quote for context.

Dončić, Young, and Morant are not just rising stars. They are stars. In fact, many would argue that Dončić and Young have already reached the superstar level. While Morant may not be there quite yet, he has shown several instances of brilliance that inspire confidence that he can reach that superstar level. Herro is not on that level. He isn’t even close. Herro was a brief fad in the NBA landscape fueled by odd circumstances and luck. As much as he’d like to be, Herro is not in the same boat as the three above.

Not because Herro is a bad player. He’s not, but the man isn’t even a starter on his team. Herro could be in contention for sixth man of the year, which is great, but immediately puts Herro a tier below Dončić, Young, and Morant. Not only that, but Herro talks about Dončić, Young, and Morant as if they haven’t already proven themselves as superstars. He refers to them as “young guys coming up in the league who can be All-Stars, superstars.” Those three are already there. They’ve each been in the league for at least two years and have had stellar performances at pivotal junctures of the season. While Morant has not earned an All-Star bid yet, his performance during the play-in tournament last season has solidified his superstar status and more or less guaranteed him a spot on the 2021-22 All-Star roster. At the very least, he’ll be one of those players who shows up in everyone’s “snub” articles.

In all fairness, Herro has had a moment like that as well. He played a pivotal role in the Miami Heat’s run to the NBA Finals in 2020. Herro became a household name, and at that point in time, Herro did have the potential to become a superstar. What keeps Herro in his own bubble (I’m so hilarious), seperate from the likes of Dončić, Young, and Morant, is that unlike those three who carried impressive regular season resumes into high-leverage situations, Herro has never had an impressive regular season.

Since the start of the 2020 season, per 36 minutes played, Herro trails Dončić, Young, AND Morant in points, assists, steals, field goal percentage, and offensive efficiency.

I don’t want to tear Herro down too much. I like the confidence, and if I were a general manager, head coach, or team owner, I’d want my young talent to be confident in their ability to grow into one of the game’s top superstars. And that idea is only bolstered by Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra’s comments on Herro’s performance during this preseason.

Does Herro have All-Star potential? Sure, but he hasn’t shown the consistency necessary to match the level that Dončić, Young, and Morant have reached. He has a long way to go before his name can be put next to any of their names.

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