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With a Big Three breakup in Miami seeming more possible than ever before, the Rockets have made their interest in Chris Bosh known.
This wouldn’t be the first time that Houston made a free agency push for Bosh, as they pursued him heavily back in 2010 when he was an unrestricted free agent. The Rockets gave Bosh a personalized iPad that featured video messages from Yao Ming, Hakeem Olajuwon, Clyde Drexler and Elvin Hayes, and they made an analytics-heavy pitch to Bosh that projected the team to win 60-plus games with him on the roster. Bosh, obviously, joined the HEAT, but the Rockets are still very interested in acquiring his services.
In fact, they’re more interested than ever, since Bosh would be perfect in Houston these days. Unlike in 2010, the team is a contender and they have two stars in James Harden and Dwight Howard. They have been searching for one more star – and a stretch-four – and Bosh just happens to be both.
Bosh would be the perfect complement to Howard in the post, and would seemingly be a better pickup than even Carmelo Anthony, whom the Rockets met with on Wednesday. According to Stein, Houston likely would’ve prioritized Bosh over Anthony, but they didn’t think they had a realistic shot at acquiring him until recently, now that James is meeting with other teams and the thought of the Big Three breaking up seems real for the first time.
The Rockets would have to clear some cap space in order to sign Bosh, just as they would have to in order to sign Anthony, which would involve trading Jeremy Lin among others. However, reports have indicated that Houston is confident that they can clear the necessary room to sign these free agents, if they’re able to persuade one to join the team. Bosh to Houston would certainly be interesting, and it’s something to watch if James decides to leave Miami.
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For much of the season, people assumed that LeBron James would return to Miami and not even consider his other options this offseason. Back in February, James said he couldn’t imagine himself leaving the HEAT and even a few weeks ago, it seemed like the Big Three were on the same page – prepared to opt out, take pay cuts and add a fourth significant piece to Miami.
However, now it’s becoming clear that James is going to explore other destinations and that he wants a maximum contract. Woj reports that James is prepared to seriously consider his other options if Pat Riley isn’t able to make some moves to upgrade Miami’s roster.
James’ agent Rich Paul has already met with three teams – the Phoenix Suns, Cleveland Cavaliers and Dallas Mavericks – in case James decides to bolt. He also spoke to the Houston Rockets over the phone and will reportedly meet with the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday.
Some sources are telling Woj that there is a disconnect between James, Wade and Bosh. Other sources speculated that it’s a smokescreen. It remains to be seen what will happen in Miami, but things definitely aren’t playing out as expected for the HEAT.
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There had been some reports that the Knicks weren’t going to offer Anthony a max contract, since Phil Jackson had went on the record saying that he wanted Anthony to follow through on his word and take a pay cut. However, the Knicks don’t want to let Anthony get away, so they made the max offer during their meeting with him on Thursday evening.
Anthony didn’t give the Knicks a response and he likely won’t make a decision for a few days. He’ll sit down with his family, friends and associates and decide which situation is best for him. New York can obviously offer the most money, but they may not be able to offer the best chance for Anthony to compete for a championship.
The superstar forward has met with the Chicago Bulls, Houston Rockets, Dallas Mavericks, Los Angeles Lakers and Knicks. It seems that his free agency tour is over, unless he decides to schedule another meeting with a new team (such as the Phoenix Suns, considering they have two max contracts to offer and there has been talk that they’ll try to sign LeBron James and Anthony) or regroup with one of the teams that he has already sat down with.
Anthony has made it clear that he doesn’t want to drag out his free agency decision, so don’t expect him to deliberate too long.
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