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Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

Posted on: July 8, 2010 2:38 am
 
About 12 hours after Chris Bosh joined Dwyane Wade in committing to the Heat, two reports emerged Thursday morning saying LeBron James was leaning toward joining them.

Newsday first reported via Knicks beat writer Alan Hahn's Twitter account that James "has decided to join Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami." The Long Island newspaper followed up with a published report saying that James "is expected to choose the Heat," citing multiple NBA sources.

ESPN's Chris Broussard, who first definitively reported Bosh's decision to team up with Wade on Wednesday, followed up about an hour later on Twitter, saying that James "will join Wade and Bosh in Miami, barring a late change of heart."

James' agent, Leon Rose, did not return a call from CBSSports.com early Thursday. A high-ranking member of the Cavaliers organization was unaware of James having made a decision.

On ESPN News, a sister station of the NBA rights-holding network that will air the announcement of James' decision at 9 p.m. ET Thursday, Broussard said James "still has time to change his mind" and called it "a fluid situation."

Even with the higher than expected $58.044 million salary cap announced Wednesday by the NBA for the 2010-11 season, the Heat don't have the space to fit two max contracts starting at $16.57 million next season under their $31.4 million in cap space after accounting for Wade's deal starting at the same amount. With only Michael Beasley and Mario Chalmers under contract heading into the signing period that began at 12:01 a.m. ET Thursday, that leaves only three options for Miami to form its Dream Team: 1) Send Beasley to Toronto in a sign-and-trade arrangement for Bosh, which sources have indicated is highly unlikely; 2) trade Beasley to another team with cap space, such as Sacramento, Minnesota or Washington; or 3) persuade its new Big Three to accept less than maximum salaries -- a shade less than $16 million in the first year of the deals would work -- for the right to play together.

The $1.944 million increase in the league salary cap above the most recent estimate of $56.1 million given by the league in April meant that the superstar triumvirate wouldn't have to leave as much money on the table as previously thought to fit into the Heat's space. Plus, Florida's lack of a state income tax would mitigate any losses the three superstars would incur.

It's a fluid situation, indeed. The buzz among NBA front office executives Wednesday pointed toward the Knicks making a late push to persuade James to join Amar'e Stoudemire in New York. Another executive within the league -- who has ties to all three of the top free agents -- said the most likely scenario was for James to announce Thursday that he's returning to the Cavaliers. Front office sources with teams in pursuit of James still were in the dark Wednesday about what team James would choose.

"Everyone is on the LeBron yo-yo a little bit," one front office executive said.

Ya think?




Comments

Since: Aug 23, 2006
Posted on: July 8, 2010 10:23 am
 

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

Terrible for the game.  "If" he goes to Miami and "if" he wins a Championship there, to me it will be completely tainted.  NBA superteam, give me a break.  It would destroy the game.  What happened to rivalries?  This would also be extremely bad for the league.  I still think that New York is the best place for LeBron especially since he is not staying in Cleveland.  He could join Amare and take a city on his back and make a billion dollars, he will have to share all the spotlight, all the Jesey sales, everything with 2 other superstars.  Not to mention the Heat are Duane Wades team.



Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: July 8, 2010 10:12 am
 

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

yeah it worked well for him in Cleveland. He does not have the ability Jordan has in making those around him play at his level. LeBron will never win a title on his own - no one does. Look at Boston.



Since: Dec 3, 2006
Posted on: July 8, 2010 10:10 am
 

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

So what number will LeBron wear in Miami considering Jordans numbers been retired there? For all you fools who say this is a bad business decision or he's not being loyal, if you're Lebron James, this is your calling to make a run as an all time winning great and opportunity unsurpassed by any other James suitors. To pass up Miami is to pass up on multiple championships and a pairing between 3 of the top 5 or 6 players in the game right now. For all of you that say it's not gonna mesh, these 3 already proved they can play together on team USA and did so in dominating fashion led by Dwayne Wade as the Olympics MVP. I guarantee Pat Riley(as Team President) will be calling the shots this roster will fill up quickly and nicely with willing and established veterans. Say hello to the dynasty of of the 10's the Miami Heat.



Since: Jun 16, 2007
Posted on: July 8, 2010 10:07 am
 

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

People who continue to knock LeBron James forget one simple thing, maybe he just wants to win?  If I were him I'd be ready for someone else to have to carry the load.  A move to the Heat extends his career and boosts the likelihood of him winning numerous championships.




Since: Jun 16, 2007
Posted on: July 8, 2010 10:06 am
 

If I Were Michael Beasley

...I would restructure my contract so I would be able to stay a member of the Miami Heat.  No one wants to be the guy who gets booted out of town because the team is trying to put something amazing together, which excludes you.  The heat still need a center but imagine if their lineup was Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, Chris Bosh, and Michael Beasley.  That's the best foursome in the league.  I heard a rumor the Heat are thinkin of bringing back Shaq.....



Since: Oct 2, 2006
Posted on: July 8, 2010 10:04 am
 

And the winner is?! .......KOBE!!!

While the Lebronze-me-while-I'm-still-a-ringless-egomaniac prepares for his Big Shew, who's sitting back and laughting but Kobe.  With Stoudamire gone, Phoenix is no factor; Boozer gone, Utah's no factor; Carmelo in a year will be gone, so long Denver.  Dallas hangs on to Dirk, but is old; Okl keeps Durant but is years away.  The path to the Finals for Kobe is a cakewalk.
Meanwhile, the East will have several loaded-up teams beating the crap out of each other before they reach the finals.  
I like Kobe's chances of surpassing MJ vis. championships.
Meanwhile, if Lebron goes to Miami and forms a new Dream Team, it will diminish his accomplishment of a winning a championship, should he even do so.  Lots of observation and statistical data suggest that Wade is as crucial to a team as Lebron, so the idea that HE won a championship will be one he can share with the likes of Derek Fisher and Scotty Pippin.
Have fun Lebron--Kobe is even more likely to stay De Man than ever!



Since: Nov 13, 2009
Posted on: July 8, 2010 10:02 am
 

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

Why does everyone keep throwing Kerr into the mix when talking about MJs surrounding talent.  That fact alone tells you that Jordan had crap around him for talent.  Yeah, he hit "one huge shot" but the guy only averaged 8 points a game at best.  Jordan made Pippen, and Pippen should thank Michael everyday for making him one of NBAs top 50 players.   We are talking about a guy on the All-time top 50 who has a career average of 16 points a game.  like i said...Pippen should thank MJ everyday.

LeBron should stay with the Cavs for a 3 year contract and he cant get the job done, then Brooklyn and the Nets will be waiting for him.  If he goes to the Heat, you can rip the name King from him...cuz D-Wade is King in Miami.



Since: May 26, 2010
Posted on: July 8, 2010 9:56 am
 

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

Holy Cow!  What I see here are a bunch of negative opinions from a bunch of basketball fans who don't consider the Heat to be their favorite team.  To say that Lebron's image will be tarnished if he goes to play with Wade and Bosh is ridiculous.  It might be tarnished in Cavalier fans eyes or Knicks fans eyes but there are plenty of other fans to take their places on the Lebron bandwagon.  Lebron wants to win and he thinks that his best chance to win is in Miami with Wade and Bosh, it doesn't matter what we all think because he gets to make that decision.

I am a Bulls fan so I would love to see him come to Chicago to play with Rose, Deng, Boozer and Noah but if it doesn't happen oh well.  I am not going to lose any sleep over it because my well being does not depend on whether or not the Bulls win or lose.

One other thing, if Lebron goes to Miami to play with Wade and Bosh I think this should be considered the first assembling of a team of this kind.  I don't see how this would compare to any other great team in the past 30 years.  Magic played with Kareem and Worthy but Magic and Worthy were drafted by the Lakers.  Jordan had Pippen and Grant but the Bulls drafted those guys.  Kerr was just a roster filler who as it turned out was really good at knocking down wide open 3's.  The Lakers have added Gasol, Artest, Odom, etc to Kobe but those guys are not perennial all-stars.  Even the Celtics recent additions of Garnett and Allen to Pierce is different because those guys were all getting a little older and wanted to make a last run at a championsip or two.  Plus, the Celtics gave up a ton in trade to get Garnett including Al Jefferson who was a very promising young player.  If Miami adds Lebron to Wade and Bosh it would be the first time in NBA history that a team has paid big money to bring in 3 free agents that are all in their prime and at the top of their games.

It should be interesting.  Stay tuned...




Since: Jul 28, 2009
Posted on: July 8, 2010 9:52 am
 

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

AMEN my friend.....this is out of hand.   He will stay in Cleveland, joining the Heat will be a huge mistake.



Since: Mar 29, 2007
Posted on: July 8, 2010 9:49 am
 

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

I hope those three will have the stamina to play all 82 games with at least 45 mins a game becuase the Heat will have NO bench. This LeBron-Bosh-Wade thing is going to fail miserably once fatigue and injuries set in and the Heat will have noone to fill-in.


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com