It's a new week and that means new rumors in the NBA free agency are fresh and ready for people to go wild over.
The biggest news over the weekend was the Mavericks resigning of franchise player Dirk Nowitzki. The Atlanta Hawks are steps away from resigning Joe Johnson to a max contract while the New York Knicks are nearing a 5-year, $100 million contract with Amar'e Stoudemire.
However, there is still very much uncertainty regarding LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. The trio are still weighing their options. Could two of them end up together? Will they go their separate ways?
The news doesn't stop there. There are a number of rumors that are burning up the NBA hot stove as we exit 4th of July weekend and await the decision of the remaining mega free agents and others.
One of the biggest trade rumors of this offseason has centered around the Nuggets' Carmelo Anthony. Initial rumors said the Nuggets would be willing to deal Anthony in advance of his free agency this time next year.
However, news spread this morning that Anthony is nearing a 3-year, $65 million extension with Denver that will put off his free agency and give the Nuggets a sense of security.
The Knicks are nearing a 5-year, $100 million with Amar'e Stoudemire, but it appears the Suns are not completely giving up yet.
While the Suns are unlikely to resign Stoudemire, the front office may pursue a sign-and-trade with the Knicks and Bulls. The trade would allow the Suns to get around $13 million in the trade exception. Additionally, the sign and trade would allow Stoudemire to earn more on his contract.
The Knicks wanted some reassurance that if they signed Amar'e Stoudemire, they would not be out of the LeBron sweepstakes. The Knicks gained that reassurance. However, Chris Bosh and not Stoudemire is the big man LeBron wants and Stoudemire's signing could be a deterrent for LeBron to go to New York.
Rumors broke over the weekend that the Atlanta Hawks are set to offer Shaquille O'Neal a two-year deal at the mid-level exception. However, Shaq's agent denied the report. Nevertheless, ESPN.com's Chris Broussard reported the Celtics and Mavericks are also interested in the Big Diesel.
Shaq has gone on record saying he is willing to re-sign with Cleveland if LeBron does the same.
The Lakers recently signed Steve Blake to a 4-year, $16 million deal. That leaves little room for Fisher. The Lakers are expected to ask Fisher to take a one-year, $2.5 million deal. That is far less than the 2-years, $10 million Fisher seeks.
Dwyane Wade took a second meeting with the Bulls late last week. Now it appears a move to Chicago may be more serious than previously believed. Not only is Wade attracted by the roster, but he has personal interests in Chicago. His family, his children and his church are all in Chicago and could be enough to pull him away from Miami.
Wade was supposed to hold a press conference in South Florida at his youth charity camp. Wade canceled that press conference out of the belief that his free agency would dominate the conversation.
Bosh had dinner with Wade on Thursday night and the two reportedly discussed playing in Chicago over Miami. So far, Bosh has only taken meetings with teams but has not provided much in the way of where he is leaning.
Bosh and Wade have the same agent and have been very close in Chicago during their free agent processes.
Derrick Rose didn't go public with his opinion, but multiple Twitter feeds have shared Rose's opinion that Joe Johnson, and not LeBron, is the best fit for the Bulls. That seems unlikely now that Johnson is close to a deal with Atlanta, but Rose and Johnson share the same agent. That may have been part of his motivation.
LeBron originally said his decision would come by Monday, July 5. Now, LeBron has pushed back his decision after his youth camp in Akron which ends on Thursday--the same day free agents can sign.
All the news is going on speculation at the moment, the growing sentiment is that LeBron will return to Cleveland. I guess we'll have to wait until Thursday.
New Orleans Hornets team president Hugh Weber went on record and stated definitively that Chris Paul will be a Hornet when the 2010-2011 season starts.
Cleveland, New Jersey, Orlando and Portland are the four teams who have continued to keep tabs on Paul's availability.
Rumors are saying that LeBron and Dwyane Wade both want to play along the superstar big man, but it appears neither will make a decision about their future until Bosh signs. Bosh it appears is willing to sign with either LeBron or Wade but he may not sign until the duo decides on their free agency status.
It is a curious catch-22 that will dictate the future of all three players.
The Houston Rockets are reportedly still on Bosh' radar although it is tough to determine how visible they are at this moment. The Rockets initially tried to put together a sign-and-trade with Toronto, but now look more like a second or third option for Bosh.
Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov announced that if the Nets do not land any of the top free agents, they will not spend simply to use up their cap space. The Nets will look to second tier free agents like David Lee, but the Nets will more likely go back to the drawing board to build their team for next season.
Spurs point guard Tony Parker remains interested in playing alongside Amar'e Stoudemire in New York. Parker, however, is under contract through next season. His desire to get to the Big Apple could be fulfilled via a sign-and-trade that sends David Lee to the Spurs.