Between the draft and the start of free agency, the 2014 NBA offseason was one of the most memorable in recent history, but it is far from over.
With top free agents like Dwyane Wade and Lance Stephenson signing new deals and veterans like Carlos Boozer finding their way onto the free-agent market, there is still plenty of fun left to be had.
Here is the latest news surrounding some of the biggest names in the NBA.
Dwyane Wade Re-signs with Miami Heat
After watching LeBron James sign with the Cleveland Cavaliers this offseason, there were many experts who wondered if Dwyane Wade would be the next star to leave the Miami Heat via free agency.
As is commonplace in the NBA now, Wade took to Twitter and announced his intention to stay in Miami via social media:
While the team hasn’t released the details of the deal to the public, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst reportedly has the financial breakdown:
The Heat did not disclose terms of the deal, but sources said Wade received a two-year, $31.1 million deal with a player option for the second year. The sources said Wade took about an $11 million pay cut over two years from the deal he opted out of, which was for two years and $42 million.
This was a no-brainer for a Miami franchise looking to stay relevant without James, but this is a very risky move for the Heat. Wade played in only 54 games during the regular season due to injuries, and his numbers suffered.
There is no question that his per-game averages of 19 points, 4.7 assists and 4.5 rebounds will help keep Miami in the hunt for a playoff berth, but his inconstancy could end up being the downfall of the team without a player like James to pick up the slack.
Chicago Bulls Cut Carlos Boozer
The Chicago Bulls made a huge splash on Tuesday when the franchise used the amnesty clause to cut high-priced power forward Carlos Boozer after several lackluster seasons in the Windy City, according to The Associated Press, via NBA.com.
Bulls general manager Gar Forman praised Boozer in a news release:
Carlos epitomized professionalism in everything he did for the Bulls both on the court, and in the community, during his time here in Chicago. Over the last four seasons, Carlos' productivity helped elevate our team to another level. I have nothing but respect for Carlos, and certainly wish him the best as he moves forward.
At 32 years old, Boozer is a shell of the player he once was. Even with his age and defensive inefficiencies forcing him out of the game in the fourth quarter, Boozer still managed to rack up 13.7 points and 8.3 rebound per game last year.
Chicago didn’t need him anymore with the signing of Pau Gasol, via ESPN, and the depth Taj Gibson gave the team at the position, but Boozer may still find a better home on a team without such high expectations.
Whether it’s the Philadelphia 76ers or another organization clearly rebuilding, Boozer has the veteran leadership and experience to be a smart signing for any prospect-laden franchise.
Lance Stephenson Joins the Charlotte Hornets
One of the most underrated names on the open market this offseason was former Indiana Pacers shooting guard Lance Stephenson, and he decided to sign with the Charlotte Hornets, according to Chris Broussard of ESPN.com.
Stephenson's agent, Alberto Ebanks, released a statement via ESPN:
Lance is forever grateful for all the love he's received from Pacers fans. He is especially grateful to his teammates, [Pacers coach] Frank Vogel, [owner] Herb Simon, the Pacers management and most of all, Larry Bird. While we tried our best to come to the best possible terms for both sides, there was not sufficient flexibility in the terms of the contract, particularly the length of the contract.
Reports throughout the negotiation process with Indiana have often strayed from the truth but suffice it to say that it was less about the money. Lance will miss the city, the team and the mentor who helped transform him into the dynamic player he has become. He looks forward to making a strong contribution and beginning a new chapter with the Charlotte Hornets.
While Stephenson isn’t the flashiest player in the NBA, he is an agitator who does all the little things well. Not only did he defensively shut down some of the best players in the league, he averaged 13.8 points, 7.2 rebounds and 4.6 assists per game last season.
After getting swept by the Miami Heat in the first round of the playoffs last year, the Hornets want to bounce back and prove the depth of the roster and the talent in the starting lineup is enough to give them a chance to contend.
Stephenson offers the experience and the leadership that could help Charlotte get over the hump.
*Stats via NBA.com.