July 8, 2010
After weeks of speculation and anticipation LeBron James held a one-hour special on ESPN Thursday night, July 8, to announce his decision. LeBron James believes that joining Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami will afford him the best opportunity to win multiple championships. After failing to lead the Cleveland Cavaliers to an NBA Championship during the first seven years of his career the back-to-back Most Valuable Player decided that Miami offers greener pastures and bluer skies than Cleveland.
One day after Wade and Bosh announced their decisions to sign with the Miami Heat James announced his decision to leave Cleveland and make a new basketball home in South Beach. He said he made his final decision Thursday morning after speaking with his mother Gloria James.
James (1st), Bosh (4th), and Wade (5th) were three of the top five picks in the 2003 NBA Draft and just seven years later they will play together in Miami. After spending the first seven years of their careers in Cleveland and Toronto, respectively, James and Bosh decided to team up with Dwyane Wade in Miami to form an All-Star trio.
The possibility of a James, Wade, Bosh trio was born in the summer of 2006 when, at the suggestion of Henry Thomas, the agent for Wade and Bosh, all three players decided to forgo five-year deals and signed matching three-year contracts with player options for the fourth year. During the summer of 2010 James, Wade, and Bosh all decided to become unrestricted free agents. These decisions made this day possible.
During his one-hour special James said, “I can’t say it was always in my plans, because I never thought it was possible. But the things that the Miami Heat franchise have done, to free up cap space and be able to put themselves in a position this summer to have all three of us, it was hard to turn down. Those are two great players, two of the greatest players that we have in this game today.”
Now that Pat Riley and the Miami Heat have pulled off the coup of the 2010 NBA free agency period they have to build a team around their trio of All-Stars. Currently the Heat have only two players, Michael Beasley and Mario Chalmers, under contract. Once Miami officially signs James, Wade, and Bosh they will have very little money left to fill their remaining roster spots. The Heat will have to try to build a championship contender around their All-Star trio with players willing to accept minimum-level contracts.
Without LeBron James the Cleveland Cavaliers have a long and arduous road ahead of them. Now that James has decided to move on to Miami the 120-88 loss that he suffered in Game 5 of the 2010 Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Boston Celtics (James’ final home game as a Cavalier) may wind up being his lasting legacy in Cleveland. There are bound to be some who believe that when the work of winning a championship in Cleveland proved to be difficult that James simply quit.
Hopefully, for LeBron James’ sake, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh will reduce his workload and help him carry the Miami Heat to at least one NBA Championship.
Information from NBA.com: Wade granted one of his wishes with Bosh coming to Miami, NBA.com: Draft 2003, 2010 NBA free agency: LeBron James announces he’ll sign with Miami Heat – ESPN, and Boston Celtics vs. Cleveland Cavaliers – Recap – May 11, 2010 – ESPN was used for this article.