Blog Entry

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 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?


Since: Sep 27, 2007
Posted on: July 8, 2010 12:15 pm

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

it's just so funny how quickly people have changed their hearts.. super team this super team that is totally crap.. i am a Miami Heat fan have always been and truthfully i would want him to go to the knicks to renew the rivalry. but thats besides the point. how can anybody fault lebron on one hand and laud guys in other sports who go to the yankees. tex, arod, cc, burnett and tons of people going to the yankees making them a allstar team every year. its hypercritical on all your behalfs. if you aplaud these guys for wanting to win chips and know the yankees are likely to give them the best chance do you say that they taint their images...NO..
furthermore if he does go to the heat all of the 3 will take less money to fill out the roster and there will be tons of guys who would take less to play on this team. raja bell, rausul buttler.. shooters and others. in any event. the heat are in a great situation and we will see what happens but don't say because he wanna win chips its bad for basketball when there are so many yankees fans out there and they do the same exact thing. if not worse

Since: Nov 25, 2009
Posted on: July 8, 2010 12:07 pm

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

I like the idea of a "Dream Team".  At the Olympics.  Or the World Championships.  NOT in the NBA.  Sure the best team on paper doesn't always win, but filling out this roster with merely OK players would be so unfair it's just not right.  Yes, I know... life's not fair but different.

Since: Mar 10, 2008
Posted on: July 8, 2010 12:07 pm

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

I just don't see it being Miami for a few reasons. (1) Lebron goes to Miami along side Wade and Bosh and wins championship(s); so what? He was able to win on an absolute monster of a team with a guy who already won a championship with an aged Shaq and a few role players. (2)  Lebron will be turning down a max contract.  Why is no one talking about this.  Just don't see him turning down the money. (3) What if Lebron goes to Miami and DOESN'T win a title with Wade and Bosh.  Seems unlikely but think of the pressure and what his legacy will be if he went to a team with guys like that around him and didn't get it done.

Since: Mar 3, 2009
Posted on: July 8, 2010 11:45 am

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

I believe they will work, but I completely agree with you about MJ status. Not to mention Wade has already won a championship without him, so if he wins one that will obviously give wade 2... I didnt think his "competitive" nature would let him go to Miami, but now who knows! Until he makes a definite decision, I still believe he will be in Cleveland.

Since: Jan 23, 2007
Posted on: July 8, 2010 11:35 am

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

It's not the same, first and formost Jordan help make Pippen after the BULLS drafted him from little known Arkansas little rock. #2 Kerr, Paxon, Grant, Harper were all good players, but nowhere near the caliber of Wade & Bosh.  Remember the catch phrase Jordan makes the players around him better?  So true....

Since: Aug 24, 2006
Posted on: July 8, 2010 11:34 am

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

At first I thought this would be a bad idea, but this would probably be the best chance for LeBron to win multiple titles. The Eastern Conference is getting stronger. If LeBron went back to Cleveland, he'd now have not only Boston and Orlando to contend with, but obviously Miami and now Chicago (with the Boozer signing) as teams to compete with in the Eastern Conference. That isn't even taking into account the Lakers in the West. In that situation, he WILL NOT win multiple rings with the team around him in Cleveland while everyone else in the East gets better. If he wants to win multiple championships, he's going to have to go to Miami or MAYBE New York with Stoudemire there and possibly Tony Parker in the near future.

Since: Sep 26, 2006
Posted on: July 8, 2010 11:27 am

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

Steve Kerr is no hall of famer buddy! Its not the same thing.   Jordan carried everyone along for the ride with him.

Since: Dec 17, 2008
Posted on: July 8, 2010 11:25 am

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

Not to mention Dennis Rodman was one of the greatest rebounders and defenders of all time.

Since: Apr 3, 2009
Posted on: July 8, 2010 11:20 am

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

All this bickering about career choices... Jordan will never be replaced. Lebron is going to have a sick career no matter where he goes! In today's NBA, teams need to have more than 2 superstars to be dominant (look at Boston) and trust me, Lebron James wants to win a championship more than he wants to sell jerseys and make a name brand for New Jersey. Studies show that after a certain amount of $$, happiness and life satisfaction doesn't really increase with more cash so Lebron the thrill of winning the NBA title. Plus, he has the option of doing that with his buddies Bosh and Wade in a place where he'll be revered, a place with lotsa sun, beaches, and hotties... Miami awaits.

Go Heat!!!

Since: Apr 26, 2007
Posted on: July 8, 2010 11:10 am

Reports: LeBron 'leaning toward' Miami

You've been WRONG before... Why don't you wait UNTIL 9pm EST like everyone else?? Stop with the speculations and so forth. I heard from a source with knowledge to the situation, who heard from another source, who heard from this guy and that guy. Enough with the speculations. Only a few hours until 9 pm. 

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