BOSTON (CBS) – After his team lost in five games in the NBA Finals to the San Antonio Spurs, not even two weeks later LeBron James did what many expected and opted out of his contract with the Miami Heat, becoming a free agent for the second time of his career.
It appears the King is looking for a new Kingdom, and despite the great number of reasons to sign with the Celtics, LeBron won’t be coming to Boston. He may not even leave his current team.
According to Sam Amick of USA Today, who joined 98.5 The Sports Hub’s The Adam Jones Show Tuesday night, the Heat are still the frontrunner to retain the league’s top player.
“If LeBron’s opt out is followed by Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh doing the same, then all indications are that the Big 3 in Miami is gonna take pay cuts, reshuffle the roster, make more room to bring in reserves and kind of re-ante up the team that couldn’t get it done in the Finals.”
There’s certainly an unpredictability factor at play here, but in the end Amick believes the Heat are still the shoo-in to land James.
“All bets are off. You get the feel that he’s going to take a look at the entire landscape and see what everybody has to offer all across the league. I think a lot of recruitments and pitches his way will be enticing. I think the frontrunner remains the Heat, but I think there is a chance he ends up leaving Miami.”
If — and it’s a big if — James does leave South Beach, Amick thinks the Rockets are an intriguing option for the 4-time league MVP.
“You’re always a little subjected to which folks you’ve been talking with more, admittedly, and the Rockets have been very outspoken. I did a piece with them last week where I talked to Dwight Howard, [general manager] Daryl Morey and even CEO Tad Brown — they have some confidence that LeBron will look their way and be intrigued by that roster and the fact that they won 54 games without him. That’s gonna be intriguing.”
Amick also mentioned the Bulls, Lakers and Clippers as possibilities, but in reality this is a league-wide discussion.
“Because of the type of player he is you have all 30 teams that would move heaven and earth to bring him into town.”
Listen below for the full discussion, including Celtics draft talk: