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Before announcing his decision Thursday night, LeBron will join fellow free agents Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in a conference call Wednesday to “discuss free agency and try to move closer to finalizing their decisions,” reports Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wonarowski.
The three plan to make their choices public by Thursday, the first day free agents are able to sign contracts.
LeBron has remained mum on his plans (though he has created his own website and opened a Twitter account), while Bosh and Wade are still considering joining forces in Miami, Chicago or New Jersey. The Bulls and Nets need to clear extra cap room to be able to sign both, but the Heat have enough space to sign both players to max contracts outright.
Wade initially seemed like he wanted to stay in Miami when the free agency period opened but has since likened to the idea of playing elsewhere alongside a star free agent, like Bosh.
The Cavs still appear to be the leaders in the LeBron Sweepstakes, even after reports of a sign-and-trade with Toronto hit a dead-end when Bosh made it clear he wasn’t interested in going to Cleveland. The Cavs can offer James $30 million than he could receive elsewhere, and they’re in his hometown. [Yahoo! Sports]
This will either make you chuckle, cry or vomit profusely. When the Cavaliers made their pitch to LeBron last weekend, they played up the whole “Home” theme, and today, they decided to share part of their presentation.
The Cavs’ video production team has a won a local Emmy for their game presentation footage, so it should come as no surprise that this is well-done. It features scenes from LeBron’s career — from high school to the pros — while music from the “Gladiator,” one of James’ favorite films, plays in the background.
So their pitch included this film and a “Family Guy” cartoon. What a combination. [FanHouse]
Believe it. The King caved and has joined the social media world.
On Tuesday, the league’s biggest free agent in history opened an account on Twitter — @kingjames – his publicist Keith Estabrook confirmed with The AP. This comes right after James’ camp established his own website, LeBronJames.com, where news of his decision will likely be announced.
LeBron had been reluctant to join Twitter and Facebook, and has even poked fun at other athletes for advertising their personal lives online. But his friend and Hornets point guard Chris Paul announced on his Twitter account — @Oneandonlycp3 — that he had convinced the King to join.
As of 1:16 p.m. ET, LeBron, who’s Twitter bio is “King of Akron,” had yet to post a single tweet or even add a picture, but somehow managed to rack up more than 23,000 followers. Oh my.
In what will be a fitting end to this lackluster free agency season, it looks like LeBron will announce his big decision on a website. That’s right. No one can take credit for breaking the news, and only the King will reap the (additional) benefits of having everyone clamor to his site for the latest updates. (Snore.)
The King and his long-time business manager Maverick Carter set up the site — LeBronJames.com – to allow fantics to “join the team” to receive the latest LeBron updates and to break the big news. The homepage reads “You’ll be the first know” with the phrase “GETTING CLOSER.”
Try to ignore the creepiness of LeBron staring at you, because this is where he’ll probably unveil his decision. Take a look!
LeBron can have his maximum contract. But some New York businesses who just so happen to share a name with The Chosen One, are hoping he comes to the Big Apple so they, too, can rake it in.
“Everyone who has that name, one way or another, they’ll benefit,” Roger M. Lebron, owner of Lebron Auto Body in Ridgewood, Queens, told the New York Post. “Maybe he’ll come down to check us out — ‘Oh, they got my name on their business!’” If he does, Roger said he’d take good care of James’ Benz, Ferrari, Hummer or Rolls-Royce. Bargain.
Omar Lebron, the manager of Lebron Restaurant Equipment warehouse in Inwood, is also eager to rake in the big bucks. “People can own a Lebron in the kitchen. We have soaps with the Lebron label, so they might sell even more now,” he said.
And who wouldn’t want a Lebron kitchen? The Lebron family, who also run a store in the Bronx, plans to see Lebron T-shirts.
Of course, not everyone is hopeful The King can bring their business extra dough. When asked about James, a woman at Lebron Real Estate in Borough Park, Brooklyn, said, “Who?” and hung up. [New York Post]
It could happen.
According to a source of the New Herald‘s Bon Finnan, Chris Paul wants out of New Orleans. And given that his former coach, Byron Scott, is set to take over the Cavs … you know where we’re going with this.
Though the Hornets have made it clear that they won’t trade their superstar point guard, we can’t help but forget what Paul said when Scott was fired last November:
What’s that? Did he say “It’s all about winning with me”?
After Mikhail Prokhorov and Jay-Z angered the Knicks by unveiling a 225-foot “blueprint” mural above Madison Square Garden last night, the Nets contingent has now taken over one of New York’s most prominent news outlet. Dolan, Donnie: You may want to stay away from the New York Post’s website today. [NY Post]
An hour after tweeting “I hear bosh-miami is done ..bosh-wade shared agent avoids tampering…its why beasley, chalmers, anthony still here…raptors get them,” the Miami Herald‘s Dan LeBatard explained himself to Dan Patrick.
Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh both want to be in Miami, he said. Now they’re trying to convince LeBron to join them. ‘Bron and Wade are friends off the court, and, despite what critics have said about the two possibly teaming up in Miami, LeBatard thinks their relationship could work on the court, as well. Plus, if LeBron goes to Miami, Pat Riley could return to the bench.
… and he won’t be going alone. Smith divulged his free agency secrets to Dan Patrick this morning.
“I got a call last night from a source, and I double-checked it with another, and they told me essentially that LeBron James and Chris Bosh are going to tag team and go together to join Dwyane Wade in Miami,” Smith told Patrick on Monday.
“Obviously, there are numerous reports out there. Whoever is wrong can have egg on their face. As far as I’m concerned, I already have. Because I thought in my heart of hearts that eventually, he would go to the New York Knicks. But around 10 o’clock last night or so, I heard the news. I stayed up for a few more hours and made a few phone calls, and I felt comfortable enough to go with what I reported.”
The Heat are $27.5 million below the projected salary cap of $56.1 million for next season, meaning they could re-sign Dwyane Wade and also get a pair of max free agents. And that pair, said Smith, will be LeBron and Chris Bosh.
“I believe it’s highly likely,” he told Patrick. “I would never say anything is a done deal with LeBron James until it’s signed. Because a year and a half ago, when I reported that he was definitively going to New York, I was told that from a very reliable source. Anybody who has watched me cover the NBA over the years, you can figure out who that person is. But I was told that he was going to New York City and that he wanted to be a New York Knick.”
Of course, by that commented, he essentially negated his entire claim. Luckily, he continues with:
“… last night, I heard emphatically that this is the direction that LeBron James has leaned toward and that Dwyane Wade has done a very good job of convincing them not just about Pat Riley and not just about the fact that there are no state taxes in Florida, but that he’s there in a tandem. That’s what it’s going to take — a tandem or a three-headed monster — to win multiple championships. And LeBron James is all in.”
Former Indiana Pacer Reggie Miller had a completely different take on the LeBron-Miami theory: “I just don’t think that’s a great fit because you’re going to have to have personalities that are going to be able to mesh,” Miller told Patrick. “Just because you put the super powers together doesn’t equate to winning basketball and winning championships. They both ball dominate and they both make plays for their teams. There’s just not enough basketball to go around. If I’m looking at all the teams that want LeBron James it is going back to the Chicago Bulls. I just think that would be the best fit.”