With three days remaining until the beginning of the biggest, most super duperest NBA free agency period in the history of sports, it’s time for our favorite game – Everyone Has a Source! The rules of this game are simple: Run an article based on the pure conjecture of someone who might have something to do with the situation, or at least claims to; make sure all sources are anonymous to keep the aura of mystery and excitement; and, above all else, make sure your rumors and reports are completely contradicted by competitive news sources. Everybody ready to go?
First up, the New York Times is reporting that, according to an anonymous NBA executive, LeBron James and Chris Bosh are as good as signed with the Chicago Bulls, despite James’ open insistence of meeting with all interested teams at neutral locations once teams are actually allowed to speak with players on July 1. But those pesky other teams? Just wasting their time, says this oh-so-opulent NBA exec.
Pull random guesses out of a hat, New York Times:
“I think it’s a done deal,” the executive said.
He said he thought James was going ahead with the meetings in Ohio “to be respectful to all these teams who jumped through these hoops,” a reference to the clubs, like the Knicks, who traded reasonably talented players like Jamal Crawford the last two seasons in an effort to open up as much salary-cap space as possible.
This exec in the hunt, who is exuding amazing confidence in his own efforts I might add, is basing his opinion on the thoughts of other NBA execs he has spoken with. This is a great way to postulate, mind you, seeing as the majority of NBA GMs are terrible at their jobs. But that’s just my opinion that is based on team records, attendance figures, retention, salary management, drafting, etc.
Meanwhile, the Houston Chronicle has information from someone “with knowledge of the Rockets’ thinking” who believes the Houston Rockets will make an offer to Joe Johnson in order to recruit Bosh. The Daily Contributor echoes that Rockets rumor, however their report also links Bosh to the Miami Heat. Bosh to the Heat to join Dwyane Wade is also a media rumor du jour.
As for the LeBron-hungry New York Knicks, team president Donnie Walsh is already covering his backside in the event that he can’t lure James to the Big Apple. Walsh told the NY Times:
“I never, the first day I met with you guys, I never said anything about any player,” Walsh said in April, repeating a lecture he had given many times. “I said I think one way, the best way, to go about trying to rebuild this team is to try to get under the cap.”
According to TheKnicksBlog.com, former screaming ESPN NBA analyst Stephen A. Smith told ESPN Radio last week that LeBron was leaning toward signing with the Knicks; however, Smith’s tune has now changed, as he said on his radio show that James and Bosh will sign with the Heat, according to his very own trusty anonymous source. Via InsideHoops.com:
It comes down to Lebron picking between the Miami Heat and Cleveland. I’ve spoken to my sources in Cleveland and New York and I’ve known 1 guy for 15 years that have never given me false information. You’re only as good as your sources. Lebron James is going to play with Dwyane Wade in South Beach. Chris Bosh and Lebron James are going to Miami Heat. Its not official, but I’m telling you Lebron is going to the Miami Heat.
Walsh’s apparent backup plan to his perceived desire to sign James and Bosh is to meet with Joe Johnson and Amar’e Stoudemire. After that it’s on to Raymond Felton and JJ Redick, and if they’re not interested, Walsh is really excited about this Stephon Marbury guy that he keeps hearing big things about.