It was a rough break-up for LeBron James and Cleveland. That acrid stench of burning jerseys and the screams of angry fans were traumatic enough to keep the Miami Heat star up at night thinking about his home team, the Cavaliers.
Now, he's kicking South Beach to the curb for Cleveland, according to an announcement he wrote in Sports Illustrated.
And his move has Houstonians asking, "How 'bout it, Chris Bosh?"
Harden-Bosh pick-and-rolls are the types of things that get Jeff Van Gundy going into nasally praise on ESPN.
The free agent power forward was James's running mate in Miami. The Rockets have posted a maximum offer of $88 million for four years -- a contract Bosh was believed to accept only if James left the Heat.
Considered to be a natural fit for center Dwight Howard and shooting guard James Harden, Bosh is a good defensive player who can stretch the floor with his shooting, averaging 16.2 points, 6.6 rebounds and 1.1 assists last season as Miami's third option.
The only problem is affording Bosh. As of right now, the Rockets don't have the space under the salary cap to fit the big man in. That could soon change, though. Houston is finalizing a deal with the New Orleans Pelicans to trade backup center Omer Asik -- a trade that was made in principle awhile ago -- and has agreed to a deal to trade Jeremy Lin to the Los Angeles Lakers, ESPN reported earlier today.
If the Rockets can do that, they'll have the space to fit Bosh. And Grantland's Zach Lowe, typically considered über-reliable when it comes to league rumors and decisions, says teams get the sense Bosh-to-the-Rockets is a done deal, cap space permitting:
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Teams dealing with HOU right now getting impression from Rox Bosh is locked in, provided they clear enough space.
— Zach Lowe (@ZachLowe_NBA) July 11, 2014
Time is a sensitive thing here. Forward Chandler Parsons signed a $46-million offer sheet with the Dallas Mavericks (Dallas, gross) yesterday. Because Parsons is a restricted free agent, Houston now has less than 60 hours to match that offer, or will lose Parsons.
Since Parsons played for the Rockets last season, Houston can go over the salary cap to re-sign him, and pay the luxury tax. The same doesn't go for Bosh, so Bosh must be signed before Parsons in order for the Rockets to fit both onto the payroll.
Who would've thought one man moving to Cleveland (sorry LeBron, we mean "Northeast Ohio") could cause so much craziness?