Tag: Miami Heat

Los Angeles Lakers v Atlanta Hawks

While waiting on Plan A to make up his mind, Lakers mulling Plan B options


Carmelo Anthony is Plan A for the Lakers. They like to mention LeBron James but they were never in that chase. With Anthony, the Lakers are in the final three that he is torn between, along with New York and Chicago.

But if the Lakers strike out, what is Plan B?

Try to get a little better next year, but don’t take on any long term deals so you can still go big game hunting in the coming years. Dave McMenamin lays it out at ESPNLosAngeles.com.

The philosophy behind the Lakers’ Plan B is twofold: find a way to be competitive next season to get back on track after a disastrous 27-55 campaign in 2013-14 yet at the same time, protect their cap space flexibility to be able to pursue the biggest names in the summers of 2015 (Kevin Love), 2016 (Kevin Durant) and 2017 (Russell Westbrook).

“It’s a good class, but in terms of today who might be at the very top, maybe it’s not as large as it might be next year or the year after,” Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak said on draft night when asked about the free-agency market this summer. “And keeping that in mind, we structured our salary knowing that, hey, you might not get two or three guys, but we have enough room to get at least one. And if we don’t have one and we choose to, we can go down the road and have flexibility next year and the year after that.”

For my money, the Lakers Plan B should be patience — do not make a max offer for someone like Chris Bosh or an oversized offer for Luol Deng. See if you can sign-and-trade Pau Gasol wherever he wants to go, do it. If you want to see if you can overpay a star for on a two-year deal go ahead (Lance Stephenson, Deng, give them more per year but a really short deal so you have cap space in 2016.

Sell Kobe Bryant to the fans and sponsors, he is the legendary player they want to see anyway, he can the distraction while you rebuild (and struggle a little). The Lakers should improve this season with a healthy Kobe and Julius Randle, but don’t make moves for this season that hurt the bigger long term goals.

Report: Sharpshooter Anthony Morrow considering Clippers, Heat, Wizards, Raptors, Suns

Anthony Morrow

If you want to stick in the NBA as a role player, be great at one thing.

Anthony Morrow does exactly that — he shot 45.1 percent from three last season. He’s not going to give you a lot of rebounding or defense or much of anything else, but the man can shoot the rock.

And a lot of teams could use a guy who can knock down threes, so he has options at this point in free agency, reports David Aldridge of TNT and NBA.com.

To be clear, Aldridge meant teams would want to use money up to the mid-level exception amount, although likely only a portion of it (or an equivalent sum not from the MLE itself).

Those are some good teams that could use Morrow, but he likely waits to see both how the LeBron James saga plays out (Miami far more attractive if he’s there, obviously) and what teams will offer him.

In the end, it’s about the money and who offers the most. But right now Morrow is part of the bottleneck, waiting his turn.

Report: Heat and Cavaliers expect decision before LeBron James leaves for Sunday’s World Cup final

U.S basketball player Lebron James takes a photograph before Liverpool's English Premier League soccer match against Manchester United in Liverpool

LeBron James, after meeting with Pat Riley in Las Vegas, is reportedly headed back to Miami.

The city, not the Heat – at least not necessarily.

Chris Broussard of ESPN and Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports have the details:

Is Dwyane Wade making a final pitch to LeBron? Are they sharing a last hurrah together?

More importantly: What will LeBron do?

If both the Cavaliers and Heat expect an answer before he leaves the country, that’s telling. I’d guess they won’t be let down on that.

However, LeBron is under no obligation to decide before heading to the World Cup. He can deliberate as long as he wants.

No matter what the teams expect, the ball is in LeBron’s court – just as it’s always been.

Gerald Wallace: LeBron James ‘not willing to take over a game’

Boston Celtics v Miami Heat

Gerald Wallace, despite not joining the Celtics until Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce were exiting, is keeping the Boston-LeBron James rivalry alive.

I don’t know where LeBron will play next season, but I’m really looking forward to his team playing the Celtics. LeBron is usually good about publicly minimizing these comments, but I have to believe this will give him a little extra motivation against Wallace.

Wallace on Fox 6 (hat tip: Jimmy Toscano of CSN Northeast)

Jordan, he never had an off night. He found many ways to contribute to the team, and I’d say Kobe is pretty much the same. You can put Lebron in that category. I think what separates LeBron from Kobe and Michael Jordan right now is that he doesn’t have the attitude or the fight that those guys had. For me, he’s not willing to take over a game, demand a game or just put the game all on his shoulders. I would like to see him get to that one day, but right now, I don’t think he has that. And that’s what Michael Jordan and even Kobe has.

I grew up in the ’90s. I grew up in the Jordan era. I’m a Jordan baby, and to me, he will always be the greatest player that I’ve ever seen play. I had an opportunity to play against him at the end of his career, which wasn’t the same, but I’ve even played against him in practice and had an opportunity to talk to him. But watching him on TV growing up, he’s the greatest player I’ve ever seen.

Wallace is wrong.

I’m not going to waste a lot of time persuading people who still believes LeBron shrinks from the moment, because it’s clearly a battle against stubborn foolishness. But I will leave a few videos as film study for Wallace or anyone else actually interested in getting wise:

Report: Isaiah Thomas meets with Suns on Thursday

Cleveland Cavaliers  v Sacramento Kings

The Phoenix Suns have Goran Dragic under contract and have promised to match any offer for Eric Bledsoe (which has yet to come, but one way or another the man will get paid). Behind them they have breakout star Gerald Green, Archie Goodwin and rookie Tyler Ennis. That’s already a deep backcourt.

Yet the Suns are having conversations that could make it even deeper.

They are meeting Thursday with Kings free agent point guard Isaiah Thomas, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports. Those talks will continue on Friday.

Thomas is a restricted free agent and the Kings can match any offer.

Thomas, like so many others (Pau Gasol, Lance Stephenson, Paul Pierce, Luol Deng and on and on) are waiting for the LeBron James/Carmelo Anthony free agency bottleneck to break and for teams to start making offers.

The Suns have the cap space (enough for a couple max deals really) so they can easily afford Thomas, although with the departure of Channing Frye a shooting forward would seem a higher priority. That backcourt in Phoenix is already pretty crowded.

That said, Thomas is a good get. A fan favorite in Sacramento he is small and lightning quick, he averaged 20 points a game with a very efficient .574 true shooting percentage because he can get to the rim and he knocks down shots. He’s a score first point guard, but that can fit in Phoenix. His big issue is defense, but he brings a real energy to the game.

The Kings front office is divided on him, but apparently the guys with the power are not that into him, went out and got a lesser guard (Darren Collison) and appear willing to let Thomas walk, unless the offer for him is so ridiculously low it would be stupid not to match.

Thomas will likely get a nice offer. The question is when and from whom, but the Suns seem an unlikely albeit interesting landing spot.