Enough is enough. What is this world coming too? Collusion I tell you will end up being the biggest blunder in the NBA. Word on the street is the Miami Heat, who presently find themselves in a 2-1 hole vs the San Antonio Spurs in the NBA Finals, are starting discussions to work on bringing Carmelo Anthony to Miami, which would create a Big 4 with Lebron James, Dwayne Wade, and Chris Bosh. Now I know what you are thinking. How the hell can that happen? Miami can’t afford all of those guys. Well if the skies are all aligned, they actually could. And here is how…
1) Lebron, Wade, and Bosh would all have to opt out of the final year of their contracts by the end of the month, and take lesser new deals to make room for a Carmelo Anthony deal. This would show the lack of selfishness of the Miami power trio if they would take less money again to stay in South Beach. But what a tandem the four of them would make. I know it wouldn’t solve Miami’s rebounding woes, but the scoring? Oh boy! You couldn’t contain them.
2) Miami would have to shed or rework some of their other player contracts to keep them from going over the cap. Udonis Haslem and Chris Anderson both possess player options and could take minimal deals to stay with a winner. Honestly, where else are they going? What do you think the Birdman is going to get on the open market? Crumbs. Stay where the weather shines bright dudes.
3) Lebron and Melo are very good friends. They both came into the league together in 2003. They would love the opportunity to play together. Melo and Wade are also good friends. These guys have publicly discussed playing together. They want too. It’s only a matter of time until it happens. Get used to it.
4) Melo desperately wants to win. He has not had much team success in his NBA career thus far. He has yet to see an NBA Finals game. He missed the playoffs for the first time in his NBA career last year and the Knicks are in turmoil. They are looking for a culture change and recently hired Derek Fisher, who a week ago was still playing, to be their new head coach and savior. May be a good time for Melo to leave don’t you think?
5) Carmelo would probably not be getting a max deal in Miami. Phil Jackson wants Carmelo to opt in to the final year of his contract allowing Melo to become a free agent next summer when the Knicks will have more money and can target not only Lebron but a host of other free agents when they will have more cap flexibility. But that means Melo has to play on a rebuilding Knicks team that should be no better than the group that they put on the floor this year. Can he take two conescutive years of being on a losing team?
6) Lebron is the most profitable player in the NBA. He is the face of the league. Every team in the NBA would pay him a max contract, but he doesn’t need that. Lebron is Madison Avenue gold. He has deals with so many successful buisnesses that he doesn’t need to take a max contract from an NBA team. He’d rather play ball with his boys and take less money to make the overall team better, something that is just not seen in today’s sports culture. Lebron James is truly an unselfish player. If more players would follow his model, maybe more stars would have an opportunity to win. James, as part of the Apple deal to buy Beats Electronics (which James was a small partner in) netted the superstar more than $30 million in stock and cash. It was the largest equity cash payout for a professional athlete. Bottom line, Bron Bron is a BUSINESS man. He’s smart. He will always get paid. It’s about rings for this dude. He’ll take less to make more in the long run.
7) The Heat are trying to follow the Spurs winning model. Keep their big stars together with them all taking paycuts, and surround them with additional, cheaper talent and the position to play on a winning team every year. Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobli, and Tony Parker have all had the opportunity to take more money elsewhere and never have left San Antonio. The stability is there. The winning culture is in place. Why would you leave that? You are already a multimillionaire if you know how to manage your money. Why go somewhere else to get paid some millions more but not win? Losing sucks.
8) Miami is a VERY attractive city to live in and play in. Sure the fans are kinda fairweathered. But the arena is always sold out. The beaches are amazing. The clubs and restaurants are hot. And there is no state tax in Florida. Duh.
9) Lebron, Wade, and Bosh are all getting older. They are all in their 30’s. Wade just isn’t the same player anymore. You could be a blind man and you would see that. The Heat need to worry about reducing the workload of Lebron. Melo would help out that instantly. Melo is a scoring machine. He is instant offense. He could help the Heat out in many ways. With Melo’s mid range and low post game, Bosh can continue to become a bigger threat on the outside, where he likes to hang out anyways. Adding Melo could provide a lot of spacing problems for opposing defenses.
10) Carmelo Anthony has said publicly that Lebron was very smart to jump ship with Bosh and Wade when they did. Do you think that he would go back and take a mulligan to have had the opportunity to play with his closest friends and All Stars if he could have instead of playing in New York? I think so. Melo, has been called by many to be a great teammmate, at least that is what was said from the guys playing on the US National team with him. He has had to be the focal point in New York because there is no one else there to carry the load. I have a strong feeling that he would become a more versatile all-around player playing on a team with other superstars. He would have to adjust his game, but Melo has a strong basketball IQ. Plus Pat Riley will be watching over all. He is like Yoda. This could all work out if the players really wanted it to. It’s not like Erik Spolestra is going to say hey Pat, don’t add one of the top 10 best players in the game to our team. We have no use for Melo.
As a Chicago Bulls fan, am I happy about this? Hell no. I wish Melo would be joining us to form our own big three with D. Rose and Joakim Noah. But as a basketball fan, of course it would be exciting to see these four on the same team together. Is it fair? Absolutely not. The new collective bargaining agreement had rules built in trying to prevent things like this. But if players are willing to take less money to team up with others, what is the league to do? There isn’t much that they can do. And in today’s NBA one or two players isn’t going to get you a championship. Just ask the Oklahoma City Thunder. As great as Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook are, they couldn’t even make it to the Finals. You need at least three chips and some pretty efficient role players to get it done. That’s why the Houston Rockets are trying to dump everyone under the sun to make a run at Melo. Why the Bulls may be willing to part with a blossiming star liek Taj Gibson to sign another big name player. And that’s why everyone who is watching this situation is paying very close attention to Kevin Love, because he is the next player being discussed to make a big 3 somewhere. Only time will tell if these superstars will all opt out or in to become free agents and change the basketball landscape once again. But I do know one thing, anything can happen, and it would a major problem for the league if South Beach forms their own big four…a major problem.