Tag: Miami Heat

If a report says LeBron James is 90 percent likely to sign with the Cavaliers, does that matter?


Chris Sheridan, a former ESPN reporter who launched his own site, believes he has a source who knows about LeBron James’ plan in free agency.

As LeBron-to-Cleveland smoke thickens, Sheridan reported LeBron’s entire inner circle – including his wife, Savannah Brinson – wants him to sign with the Cavaliers.

Maybe Sheridan is ahead of this. He’s been around a long time and has connections.

Or maybe he’s elevating an unreliable source, because sensational updates draw page views.

I don’t know, but I do think these reports are worth considering.

Here’s the latest from Sheridan:

A plugged-in source tells me there is a 90 percent chance that LeBron James will return to the Cleveland Cavaliers, and it will be announced on www.lebronjames.com if it happens.

That is my latest intelligence, and it comes from the same league source who told me Monday that he felt there was a 75 percent chance James returns to his original NBA team.

I am told the folks at lebronjames.com were updating their servers to handle a traffic crush, but I could not confirm this

Was Sheridan’s source wrong yesterday? Or has something changed in the last day?

If it’s the latter, Sheridan doesn’t explain any developments – a big hindrance to Sheridan establishing his own credibility.

And if it’s the former, that’s pretty self-explanatory. That would mean Sheridan’s source doesn’t know what he’s talking about.

Either way, I’m not taking this report at face value, but I share it for three reasons.

1. You can believe it fully if you desire.

2. I thought LeBron would stay in Cleveland in 2010, when, in hindsight, so many pre-Decision signs pointed to him leaving. I’m probably more apt to paying attention to the tea leaves this time, even though I won’t believe them out of hand.

3. If you want to maniacally refresh www.lebronjames.com, you have a chance of knowing LeBron’s decision seconds before everyone else. (Perhaps, omeone with a vested interest in that site drawing traffic would have incentive to mislead Sheridan. Hmmm.)

Tuesday And-1 links: Plenty of small free agency updates (plus Spencer Hawes wants Blake Griffin’s number)

Greg Monroe, Andre Drummond

Here is our regular look around the NBA — links to stories worth reading and notes to check out (stuff that did not get its own post here at PBT) — done in bullet point form. Because bloggers love bullet points more than German strikers like to score goals….

• Maybe the best thing I’ve read about the “trade rumor era” in the NBA. If you read one thing today it should be Bryan Curtis’ piece at Grantland.

• Andre Drummond wants Greg Monroe back with the Pistons. More importantly, so does Stan Van Gundy. That said nobody has made him a max offer yet, but that’s part of the dam that could break after the LeBron/Carmelo bottleneck shakes loose.

• In case you missed it, LeBron James and Dwyane Wade had dinner at LAVO restaurant in the Palazzo in Las Vegas Monday. What you think that means says more about what you want to happen than what they actually talked about, because we don’t know. Here is what I do know: If you’re going to it Italian at the Palazzo B&B is the better option.

• Also in case you missed it, Pau Gasol met with OKC coach Scott Brooks on Monday. The Thunder have made a big push for him with both Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook making personal pitches. But Gasol has a lot of options and there are questions if the urbane Gasol wants to move to Oklahoma City.

• Spencer Hawes is going to be so much fun on the Clippers.

• The Hornets had a big meeting Monday with Gordon Hayward. Hayward is trying to get someone to give him a big offer… one the Jazz likely match, which is why teams are hesitant to make the offer.

• Derrick Rose update:

• Among the players waiting on LeBron James to make a decision? Garrett Temple. He was reportedly going to get an offer from Miami but he doesn’t want to go to Miami if LeBron is not there, so he is being patient. The Wizards also are in the mix.

• Jordan Farmar talks about his decision to move down the hall at Staples Center to the Los Angeles Clippers.

• At Grantland Zach Lowe nailed the complexities of the idea players should sacrifice money to win.

• In case you missed it, San Antonio agreed to a two-year deal with guard Bryce Cotton, but it is only partially guaranteed.

• Utah hopes to retain free agent  John Lucas III, mostly as a mentor for Trey Burke and Dante Exum.

• Former Raptor and Spur Nando De Colo decided rather than ride another NBA bench he is going to take $2 million from CSKA-Moscow. Can’t blame him.

• LeBron James’ jersey from Game 1 of the NBA Finals this year — the “cramp game” — sold for $50,000 at a charity auction.

• Tony Wroten showed up at the Seattle pro-am and dropped 53, and made one defender look very, very, bad.

Report: LeBron James to meet with Pat Riley Wednesday in Las Vegas

LeBron James, Erik Spoelstra, Pat Riley

Maybe, finally, this will lead to a little clarity.

NBA free agency has been bottlenecked waiting for LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony to make their decisions, which will open up the secondary markets and after that the dominos will start to fall quickly.

LeBron James is set to meet with Pat Riley and talk about his future with the Heat on Wednesday, reports Marc Spears of Yahoo Sports.

Riley will be able to point to the signings of Josh McRoberts and Danny Granger. Not exactly huge stars, but Miami’s big three of LeBron, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade aren’t leaving so much money on the table as to allow Riley to go after the big, more expensive names. Those two are signs of a deeper bench Riley plans to build with the money he does have (whatever it ends up being exactly). Miami’s front office remains confident LeBron will return.

There has been a lot of momentum toward LeBron returning to Cleveland as the prodigal son. There are certainly basketball reasons to do so — Kyrie Irving is better than anyone on the Heat and with Andrew Wiggins and a host of recent and future high picks they can put together an interesting, albeit young team. Part of the momentum and rumors also have been fueled by LeBron’s agent suggesting that the Cavaliers can pull this off. There are also a lot of people close to LeBron who miss what they had in Cleveland — LeBron and his crew had full run of everything in the Cleveland organization, Miami is not that way at all. Miami is Pat Riley and a very solid structure. Some around LeBron miss the old days, the power.

The question is: Does LeBron?

He’s a far more mature person at 29 than he was at 25 when he left Cleveland — he’s married, far more stable, and he has a couple of rings and four trips to the Finals. He’s been through a lot and has grown from it.

He makes his own decisions, he sees both what Miami has given and can do for him and potential in Cleveland.

The question is what does LeBron want.

Luol Deng patiently considering all options, even return to Chicago. Although that’s not likely.


Like Pau Gasol and Paul Pierce and a host of others, Luol Deng is considering his options and waiting.

Remember he turned down three years, $30 million from the Bulls and now he wants more — certainly more years, ideally more money per year (but not less). He saw what Josh Smith and Andre Iguodala got and wants to be in that ballpark. Miami couldn’t give that to him, so they are out.

Atlanta might as they are the team making the hardest run at him in recent days, but also in the mix potentially are the Clippers (unlikely sign-and-trade), Wizards, Mavericks, Raptors and Lakers are all lurking. Deng knows that once the LeBron James/Carmelo Anthony/Chris Bosh players start to make their moves other offers will open up for him.

What about the Bulls? Deng’s agent told Steve Aschburner of NBA.com it could happen.

“It appeared uglier than it was,” said agent Ron Shade (about Deng’s trade out of Chicago to Cleveland), who works with Chicago-based Herb Rudoy. “Luol is a professional, so what happened if January is forgiven but not forgotten….

“Like I say, Luol is a professional,” Shade said. “He will hear every reasonable option and give it serious thought. We won’t close any door on that possibility at all.”

The problem with Deng to the Bulls is finding a way for both sides to save face.

But that three-year, $30 million number, made so public, has become a set point that complicates the situation. If Deng accepts it now, some will characterize that as “crawling back” on the Bulls’ terms. If Paxson and Forman sweeten the deal, it might be portrayed that they “caved” and are scrambling to make up for their inability to woo Anthony.

More than likely Deng will not return to the Windy City, making the questions where, and for how much, will he sign.

Deng is waiting it out. As are we all.

Report: Spurs, Bulls, Lakers, maybe Thunder in mix for Pau Gasol as he waits

Los Angeles Lakers v Denver Nuggets

Pau Gasol is waiting. Like the rest of us.

Carmelo Anthony and LeBron James have largely bottlenecked free agency as they take their time making their decisions — maybe because they want to play together. Doesn’t matter the reason, they have the right to make their own decisions on their own schedule. It just leaves everyone hanging.

Like Gasol. A host of quality suitors are targeting him, with various contract offers, but he’s not moving until those two do. If Anthony goes to Los Angeles Gasol likely follows, if not… who knows. Adrian Wojnarowski has the latest.

About the Thunder, signals are mixed apparently, reports Dave McMenamin of ESPNLosAngeles.com.

The Thunder and Spurs reportedly have the same mid-level exception offer ($5.3 million a year to start, max four years), so for Gasol that would be a matter of fit. Reportedly he was impressed that both Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook pitched him personally. It’s very easy to picture Gasol working well in the Spurs system and making them even more difficult to beat.

The Bulls, if they don’t land Anthony, could be a great fit with him at the four, and they will be contenders if Derrick Rose can stay on the court. Plus the Bulls can potentially offer more money.

He loves Los Angeles and playing next to Kobe Bryant, if Anthony comes it’s expected Gasol returns. The Knicks would like to get in the game but need to clear out enough salary to even offer the mid-level exception money.

Gasol has options because he’s still as skilled a big man as their is in the game — other teams realize his slide the last couple years was more about how Mike D’Antoni used him than his skills deteriorating. Look at the caliber of teams targeting him — they get what has happened and that he could be a good value addition.

However, Gasol is in no rush to choose one of those options. Just like LeBron and ‘Melo.