When LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade (as well as Udonis Haslem) opted out of their contracts before the June 30 deadline, effectively giving the Miami Heat $55 million in cap space this summer, it was widely assumed the four players were working in concert. The prevailing belief was that the plan included all four re-signing as members of the Heat, with Bosh, Wade and Haslem taking pay cuts in order to give the Heat flexibility to add other contributors.
However, according to a new report from ESPN’s Chris Broussard, the Big Three are not working together.
When the Miami Heat‘s “Big 3″ went their separate ways after a lunch meeting last Wednesday, they went not knowing whether they had played their last game together, according to sources with knowledge of the situation.
The only certainty coming out of the meeting concerning James was that he wanted a maximum-level salary.
Broussard’s report also adds that LeBron did not ask Wade and Bosh to take discounted rates, and that James’ return to Miami is far from a lock.
“It’s not a done deal,” said one source, when asked about James’ return to Miami. “That’s for sure.”
Bosh and Wade were so uncertain about James’s future after last week’s meeting that one of them spoke about what the Heat might look like without James, according to one source.
It’s certainly a shocking report, given all signs, even little things such as LeBron being out of the country right now and not present at free agent pitch meetings, made it seem awfully clear that the Big Three and Haslem were planning a return.
This is just another twist in what is shaping up to be another crazy NBA summer.