Well, the first day of free agency has come and gone, and the second day is nearing an end.
We’ve learned a few things along the way, such as the fact the Atlanta Hawks management is woefully inadequate in terms of building a championship squad for their fan base (seriously, guys, six years and $119 million for Joe Johnson?), and the Memphis Grizzlies are…well…the Memphis Grizzlies, inking Rudy Gay to an overpriced five-year, $80 million deal.
Some other notable signings took place, such as the Boston Celtics agreeing on a four-year, $61 million deal with their perennial All-Star forward Paul Pierce.
But the majority of the deals that went down were signings of small-name players like Drew Gooden, who is to become a Milwaukee Buck for the next five years at the again too-high price of $30 million (boy, some NBA management teams just love throwing away money, don’t they?).
The big names are still on the table, however, and don’t expect them to go anywhere before the day is done or before this weekend is over. LeBron James met with representatives of the Nets and Knicks yesterday, with Jay-Z pleading his case to the erstwhile two-time MVP in hopes of luring him to New Jersey (I just can’t see LeBron even seriously considering playing the next two or three seasons in Newark).
James then met with the Miami Heat today.
One meeting that took place that isn’t really being discussed by the major media outlets may have been the most important meeting of either day and is probably more telling about what is to come over the next few days than any of the others. It was an informal meeting between Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh (see the photo above) where they had dinner together and discussed the day’s events.
What’s significant about this meeting is the Tweet Bosh wrote immediately afterward, along with the photo posted of the meeting. In his Tweet, he says:
“Just had dinner w@dwadeofficial. Great way to end day 1 of #freeagency. Although it feels like someone is missing…”
Reading that Tweet and seeing the photo of Wade and him sitting with an empty chair between them gave me goosebumps. It confirmed in my mind what I’d been hoping and praying for over the past week: the rumors were more than just wishful thinking and that Pat Riley and Dwyane Wade have orchestrated a way to create a “Superteam” of Wade, James, and Bosh.
While I’m sure all the fans of other teams will dismiss this text message from Bosh as nothing important, and ignore the photo as equally unworthy of attention, I think it’s clear to any thinking person that Bosh was referring to LeBron James and was sending a subtle, yet very powerful message that he, D-Wade, and LeBron are going to do it. They are going to join up in Miami and create a dynasty.
Now, I realize that this will break the hearts of many a fan in the NBA. There are many Cleveland Cavaliers fans who will be devastated by James leaving their beloved city. I feel for them; I really do. But I can’t help feeling giddy about the fact James is coming to Miami, despite their heartbreak.
There are also bound to be many who will try to dismiss this troika as nothing big and say their teaming up won’t guarantee the Heat a title. To them, I can only say please enjoy living in your fantasy world. Perhaps they’ll come to grips with reality after the Heat win their fifth or sixth title in a row, who knows?
There will be others who will simply hate the Heat because of this grouping. A prominent writer for ESPN has stated such a team would give him something he’s been longing for; a team to hate. I say to all of them: Go for it. Hate away. It won’t stop Miami from winning anything.
As Chamillionaire would say, Miami Heat fans will just look at all them and say, “Good morning, Ha-Ha-Ha-Ha-Haters!”
Anyway, enjoy the rest of the holiday weekend, everyone. I, for one, am secure in the knowledge that despite all the hoopla, everything important has already been settled. Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, and Chris Bosh are going to form a Superteam (or Dream Team if you like) in Miami, and all is going to be right with the world. They’ll win five-to-seven titles (I’m thinking seven probably, since Riley will want to pass Phil Jackson’s number).
It's looking like the Knicks and Nets will have to fight over the services of Amar’e Stoudemire and the like. I’m not sure Jay-Z would have the upper hand over Mike D’Antoni on that score, though, since Amar’e loved playing for D’Antoni in Phoenix and the Knicks just offered Stoudemire $100 million over five years.
Maybe Jay-Z can draw a "blueprint" for the Nets new majority owner that will show him how to best that offer from New York.