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Friday , Jul , 09 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Dan Gilbert: LeBron ‘quit’ during playoffs

He has gotten a free pass," Gilbert said in a phone interview with The AP. "People have covered up for [James] for way too long. Tonight we saw who he really is."

"He quit," Gilbert said. "Not just in Game 5, but in Games 2, 4 and 6. Watch the tape. The Boston series was unlike anything in the history of sports for a superstar."

"It's not about him leaving," Gilbert said. "It's the disrespect. It's time for people to hold these athletes accountable for their actions. Is this the way you raise your children? I've been holding this all in for a long time."


HoopsVibe`s Very Quick Call: I’m certain Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert will be receiving a phone call from Commissioner David Stern telling him to cool it.

Sure, LeBron James showed zero class by announcing he was leaving Cleveland for Miami on national television, embarrassing an owner, organization, city, and, state that has showered him with adulation and love for seven years.

And sure, James mailed it in against the Boston Celtics in the 2010 playoffs and was pretty mediocre against the Orlando Magic in the 2009 Eastern Conference Finals.

So Gilbert has a point, a very good one, in fact.

However, owners don’t do this. Owners don’t act like jilted lovers when things don’t go their way. Owners don’t write nasty letters to fans, essentially hexing the face of the league –even if it’s totally justified.

Owners are supposed to model professionalism for fans, players, front office staff and, heck, even the guy pouring pints at Quicken Loans Arena.

By doing this, by stooping to James and Maverick Carter’s level of nonsense, Gilbert has made it harder to attract a star(s) to replace The King.

After all, players talk. And James and his posse will put out the word to the fraternity of ballers that Gilbert is a micromanager, tyrant, and jerk.

This may or may not be true. The NBA is like life, though. Perception is reality. And the gossip will overshadow Gilbert’s desire to win championships and his willingness to write multi-million dollar luxury tax cheques to achieve this end.

Right now, Gilbert, an Alpha Male billionaire, must do something out of character. He must turn the other cheek. He must take the high road.

If he can’t stay somewhat silent, if he can’t stay mum, then the businessman must immediately tone down the rhetoric and describe his frustration in a more appropriate and reasonable manner.

Gilbert is right: the people of Cleveland and Ohio deserved far better from James. Those same people also deserve far better from Gilbert, too.

-- Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Friday , Jul , 09 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

The Decision is in: LeBron Will Join Bosh and Wade in Miami

LeBron James put the NBA on notice Thursday night, joining Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami.

Ending weeks of silence and drama, the two-time MVP said on his ESPN special from Greenwich, Conn. on Thursday night that he's decided to join the Miami Heat and leave the Cleveland Cavaliers after an unsuccessful seven-year quest for the championship he covets.


Got thoughts? Hit us up with your reaction in the comment box below and come back to HoopsVibe for more on this story.

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Thursday , Jul , 08 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Mike Miller to join Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade, and maybe LeBron James in Miami?

The Heat have offered Mike Miller a five-year deal, worth approximately $27 million-$30 million. Miami has given Miller a deadline of Thursday night to decide. Miller has been told by the Heat that they are 'confident' LeBron James will be joining the Heat.

HoopsVibe's very Quick Call: Catch and shoot. That's all he'd have to do.
With or without James, Mike Miller would be ideal for the Miami Heat. The former Rookie of the Year would feast off the open looks he'd get playing next to a plethora of superstars. And his jumper would keep opposing defenses relatively honest.
Best of all, Miller - who spent years losing with the Memphis Grizzlies, Minnesota Timberwolves, and Washington Wizards - would surely appreciate the opportunity to be on a contender.
-- Oly Sandor.
Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.
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Thursday , Jul , 08 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Kleiza offer sheet latest example of Colangelo and Raptors’ flawed vision

The Raptors have signed Nuggets restricted free agent forward Linas Kleiza to a four-year, $20 million offer sheet, according to Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports.

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Gee, get the impression Toronto Raptors GM Bryan Colangelo is desperate?

The former golden boy of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment will either get nothing or Mario Chalmers and a trade exception - which is pretty close to nothing - from the Miami Heat for superstar Chris Bosh.

Instead of regrouping and developing a cohesive plan, instead of laying out a clear vision going forward for the Raptors, Colangelo is doing the opposite. He’s reacting.

Case in point: today’s news the organization is tendering a pretty fair contract to restricted free agent Linas Kleiza, a skilled Euro’ scorer, who believes he is above getting down-and-dirty on defense.

Haven’t the Raptors seen this song and dance before? Don’t they already have a couple of finesse swings who believe getting-stops is for the hired help?

So what’s Colangelo thinking? Simply put, he's not.

For years, there’s been a serious disconnect between the style the Raptors want to play and the skill-set their players have. And this is the two-time Executive of the Year’s fault.

For instance, the club has talked publicly of wanting to be a get-stops, defensive-minded club. This was Sam Mitchell’s mandate. Ditto for Jay Triano.

However, Colangelo too often drafts, signs, or trades for soft foreigners, who simply can’t get it done in their own end. His go-to is the skilled Euro from a tiny, unpronounceable republic across the Atlantic Ocean.

Last year, the club started Andrea Bargnani, Jose Calderon, and Hedo Turkoglu. All are skilled Europeans. All are below average defenders.

Kleiza is a nice player, but more of the same for Toronto, which is a problem.

It’s time for Colangelo to start thinking clearly. Or it’s time for him to follow Bosh out the door.   
--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.
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Thursday , Jul , 08 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Report: LeBron to join Wade and Bosh in Miami

LeBron James has decided to join Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami, according to multiple sources that spoke with Newsday.

"Multiple sources are telling Newsday that LeBron James has decided to join Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami," wrote Hahn on his original Tweet, posted shortly after midnight Eastern. "The new Big Three is here."

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: If true, it would instantly change the balance of power and landscape in both the Eastern Conference and NBA.

Together, Chris Bosh, LeBron James, and Dwyane Wade have the talent to dominate the league for years to come, and challenge the two-time champion Los Angeles Lakers.

Some kinks would need to be ironed out, though.

For instance, some have questions about James and Wade, who both dominate the ball, playing with each other.

The Heat would be tight on cap space and hard pressed to add key role players that are necessary to winning a championship.

Then there’s the little matter of the coach. Does Erik Spoelstra stay? Or does Hall of Fame bench-boss Pat Riley once again swap the executive suite for the sideline?
Even with these issues, Bosh, Wade, and (possibly) James would make Miami the early favourite in 2011.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Thursday , Jul , 08 , 2010 Christopher Sells

Witness the Decision

I'm pretty sure I like LeBron James a lot less today than I did about two months ago. Back then, he was a player who everyone was sure could lead his team to a title and was probably the unquestioned best basketball player on Earth.

Today, he's an attention whore who wants us all to anxiously await the moment he "decides" what team he's going to suit up for next season.

Read More
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Wednesday , Jul , 07 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Surprise, Surprise: Bosh and Wade reportedly pick Miami over Chicago

Wade and Bosh are expected to announce their decision on Wednesday, according to the source, and continue to lobby James, along with Heat president Pat Riley, to join them in Miami, despite the financial complexities involved for the Heat to make room for all three.


HoopsVibe`s Very Quick Call: I know it. You know it. Most importantly, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade know it, too.

LeBron James probably isn’t leaving his home of Cleveland, Ohio to join the NBA’s newest dynamic duo, Bosh and Wade, in Miami.

Simply put, James is The King. While he’s a rule-by-consensus, constitutional monarchy type of king, he still has to be the undisputed first option.

He’s the lead dog. He’s the Alpha Male. And he’s the Michael Jackson of whatever group he`s in -minus the white glove, interviews with Martin Banshear, and threats of dropping a child over the balcony.

It’s always been this way. Always will be, too. So James probably won`t ink a deal with the Heat, where he would have to share the rock with another ball dominating guard in Wade.

Bosh and Wade knew this, but still, reportedly, signed in Miami. Now they must win with a limited supporting cast, which isn`t easy in a competitive Eastern Conference.

Instead of gambling on James, they should have, perhaps, hedged their bets and signed with the Chicago Bulls.

After all, young Derrick Rose is one of the NBA’s best point guards, while Joakim Noah is a nasty, blue-collar post. And Taj Gibson had a promising rookie campaign.

Best of all, the parts –unlike a Miami team with or without James – would fit together. So why didn`t Bosh and Wade give greater consideration to The Windy City?

And it may be a decision they regret.

-- Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Tuesday , Jul , 06 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Shaquille O’Neal would be ‘The Big Problem’ with Atlanta Hawks

The Hawks have offered Shaquille O'Neal a two-year contract that starts at $5.8 million per season, according to NBA sources close to both the team and the player.


HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Is The Big Aristotle about to become The Big ATL?

Reports indicate Shaquille O'Neal is considering the Hawks' multi-year deal; however, it remains to be seen if this would be a fit for both player and team.

Shaq is desperate for another NBA Title. Unfortunately, good but not great Atlanta is hardly the spot for him to taste championship glory for the fifth time in his illustrious career.

Even if the Hawks signed the massive post, they wouldn't be better than the past two Eastern Conference champions: the Boston Celtics and Orlando Magic. And they'd struggle with the Cleveland Cavaliers -provided Lebron James does the expected and re-signs later this week.

Meanwhile, Atlanta needs bench help, and not an aging five-man who spends a minimum of twenty games per season on the bench rocking designer suits.

When O'Neal is fit, he would demand minutes and touches, which would likely alienate a young, talented, and temperamental frontline of Al Horford, Josh Smith, and Marvin Williams.

However, the biggest potential issue would be with rookie coach Larry Drew because O'Neal has clashed with almost every sideline boss he ever had.

For instance, after leaving the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat, he publicly slammed Phil Jackson and Pat Riley -both of whom are in the Hall of Fame.

This brings us back to Drew. The former back-up point guard is a career assistant, who got the head gig in Atlanta for one reason: he was cheap.  

So Drew has less credibility than former Phoenix Suns head coach Terry Porter, who O'Neal sabotaged, undercut, and compromised before he was replaced at mid-season by Alvin Gentry.

What would happen when Drew tells O'Neal to lose weight or defend the pick-and-roll?

Simply put, he can't. Frankly, Drew lacks the pedigree to truly hold O'Neal accountable. And this would surely become a problem for an impressionable team.

On the surface, this partnership sounds nice. Both O'Neal and Atlanta should take a pass, though. It's for the best.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at us in the comment box below.    

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Sunday , Jul , 04 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Dwyane Wade to the Knicks: ‘get me one player and I’ll get you a ring’

A source with direct knowledge of the meeting said that when the Knicks told Wade they would build their team around him, he responded, "Just get me one player and I'll get you a ring."

HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: What's up with Dwyane Wade?
Initially, he told reporters he was staying with the Miami Heat. Then he was reportedly enamoured with the Chicago Bulls. And now he's making promises to the New York Knicks -who will need much more than two superstars to win an NBA Title.
There's an explanation making the rounds. And it's not good.
Some have speculated Wade is hyping the process for a documentary he's producing about his free agency. If true, this shows poor taste, especially when compared to fellow free agent LeBron James, who invited teams to his home in Akron instead of touring the United States like a darn rock star.
Wade has now met with will all suitors. No more excuses or shenanigans. It's time for a decision.
--Oly Sandor.
Got thoughts? Well, get a tus in the comment box below.
Who has the better plan: Knicks’ 3 Star Plan, Nets’ Blueprint, Miami’s Super Team, or Chicago’s Business?
Friday , Jul , 02 , 2010 J.N.

Who has the better plan: Knicks’ 3 Star Plan, Nets’ Blueprint, Miami’s Super Team, or Chicago’s Business?

The sales pitch has got to be one of the toughest things to put together for any marketing team. It is one of those things that science alone cannot help them. The only way science can help is in producing the right numbers – the sweet science of money. There’s another science as well and that is the science of reproduction. Sex parties are the cure, but then again who wants herpes? That doesn’t cope well with these big name free agents doing public appearances. Even Delonte West gets clowned on and supposedly it’s just a birth mark.

Read More
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Wednesday , Jun , 30 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

True or False: Toronto trading Bosh to Miami for Anthony, Beasley, and Chalmers?

ESPN's NBA contributor Dan LeBatard reports that the Raptors are poised to complete a sign-and-trade deal with Miami that would see Bosh go to the Heat for power forward Michael Beasley, point guard Mario Chalmers and forward Joel Anthony.


HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Right now, this is a report. Nothing more.

And LeBatard broke this via twitter, so draw your own conclusions; however, the ESPN scribe is typically on point with the happenings of the Miami Heat. 

Still, TSN and The Globe and Mail - which are both based out of Toronto - also have a strong relationship with key people in the Raptors' front office. They've both disputed LeBatard's report. So, again, draw your own conclusions.

Some will hope this report is baseless for the Canadian dinos. They'll argue Bosh is a frontline superstar, and the club has to get more than Anthony, Beasley, and Chalmers.


Of course, CB4 is an unrestricted free agent. On July 1st, he can walk and the Raptors would get nothing back. Some compensation is better than no compensation.

Still, the next few days will be interesting. Chris Bosh, the Miami Heat, and the Toronto Raptors will be in the middle of the action.

Fact or Fiction? What are your thoughts on this report that Bosh has been traded to the Heat? Come back to HoopsVibe News for more this developing story!

The LeBron Free Agency Madness and Reporters’ Sources
Tuesday , Jun , 29 , 2010 J.N.

The LeBron Free Agency Madness and Reporters’ Sources

People involved with the NBA and sports media are really sticking their necks and reputations on the line. I love it! Their true colors are shown. We have never witnessed anything like this before. The entire free agency arms race is 10x more explosive than the Big Network’s extravaganza about Brett Favre and his jeans. Everyone has a hard on for LeBron. Analysts on television, print, and radio are arguing against each other over speculations. Speculations? That’s another word for opinion. Get your popcorn and enjoy the freak show! I have!

Read More
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Tuesday , Jun , 29 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Raptors offering Bosh and Jack to Lakers for Bynum and Odom?

"The Raptors would like to get something in a sign-and-trade for Bosh, but they likely won’t deal him in the East. The Lakers are expected to offer Andrew Bynum, a legitimate low post center, and Lamar Odom, and take back Jarrett Jack, whom the Raptors would like to move."


HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: All they can do is make the best of a bad situation.

After all, franchise face Chris Bosh seems destined to leave the Toronto Raptors as a free agent when the market opens July 1st. Executive Bryan Colangelo admitted as much at a recent press conference.

There's no easy way to lose a 26 year old superstar. However, there's an easier way.

For instance, if Chris Bosh joins fellow free agents LeBron James and/or Dwyane Wade in Miami or Chicago, he'll likely leave a year and $30 million on the table. And the Raptors will get nothing in return.

If Bosh inks a deal with the Raptors as part of a sign-and-trade, he can get the longest term and most money available. And the club can get something back, which is better than nothing.

Enter the Los Angeles Lakers. The two-time defending champs are offering Andrew Bynum and Lamar Odom for Bosh and Jarrett Jack.

Such a deal would achieve two things. First, Bynum is a legit five-man. His length, size, and ability to plug the middle would transform the Raptors into a more defensive side. And skilled post Andrea Bargnani could slide to the four-spot, his natural position.

Second, Bosh would be out west. He wouldn't be in the same conference. He wouldn't drop into Air Canada Centre several times a year with his new superstar teammates. He wouldn't win championships with the the Bulls or Heat. And all of this would allow the Raptors to save face.

Of course, the ball is in Bosh's court. As an unrestricted free agent, he holds most of the cards.

All Colangelo can do is offer a sign-and-trade. Joining Kobe Bryant and the NBA's best team may be enough for Bosh to re-consider his plans to partner with James and Wade, especially if he gets the maximum term and money.

This is the Raptors' only card, so Colangelo better do everything to play it.

Got thoughts?       

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Monday , Jun , 28 , 2010 Andrew Flint

Rumor: Bell to join Bosh, James, and Wade in Miami?

"I’d obviously like to play for a winning team and win something. I got two boys and a wife and our home base is Miami so anywhere up and down this east coast would be a great fit for me." Link HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: There are two reasons Raja Bell - an unrestricted free agent - has interest in suiting up for the Miami Heat. First, as Bell mentioned South Beach is home. He grew up in Florida. He went to college in Florida. And his family lives in Florida. So there's a sentimental attachment to the area. Second, Bell is aware of a rumor making the viral rounds: Chris Bosh and LeBron James will join Dwyane Wade and sign with the Miami Heat instead of the Chicago Bulls. James reportedly has concerns about the Bulls: owner Jerry Reinsdorf is always reluctant to spend on winning; Derrick Rose may struggle off the ball next to The King; there's no three-point gunner to spread the floor and keep opposing defenses honest; and Tom Thibodeau is a rookie coach. (Of course, this could be conjecture and speculation. Chicago still has much to offer free agents.) So Bell knows Miami could well become a contender -and surely wants in. The Heat - after the dust settles with James and Bosh - should add Bell. His defense, intensity, and three-point stroke is perfect for a contending team. And he’d likely give oil-slick GM Pat Riley a hometown discount. Right now, Miami is looking to make major moves, which could land them a useful veteran in Bell. Got thoughts?
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Friday , Jun , 25 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

World Wide Wes: LeBron James ‘is going to Chicago and Chris Bosh is coming, too’

To listen to World Wide Wes, LeBron will never look back on Cleveland. “He’s up out of there,” is the way he tells it to people, but LeBron’s Akron crew has to tsk-tsk such public talk because they all live in Northeast Ohio, and maybe always will. "We're going to Chicago," WIlliam Wesley tells people," "and Chris Bosh is coming, too." 


HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: 'World Wide Wes', one of the NBA's great power brokers, believes the Chicago Bulls are poised for a big off-season. And he's right.

After dealing Kirk Hinrich and their 17th pick in Thursday's draft and getting nothing but cap space back, the Bulls have the financial flexibility to tender two max' contracts.

So The Windy City could sign LeBron James and bring in Chris Bosh, too. 

Other clubs - the Miami Heat and New York Knicks - can also offer a pair of max contracts, but the Bulls distinguish themselves by already having a star point guard in Derrick Rose and an established four-man with Joakim Noah.

Such a supporting cast may be enough for James to turn his back on the Cleveland Cavaliers -even though they can offer the most money, longest term, and he grew up in nearby Akron, Ohio.  

Even if James gets sentimental and re-signs with the Cavaliers, the Bulls could turn to superstar Joe Johnson, which isn't a bad plan-B.

Bottom line: Chicago is the team to watch this summer. 

Got thoughts?

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Wednesday , Jun , 23 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Jalen Rose: `LeBron James will not be returning to the Cavs’

Jalen Rose: ``It is almost CERTAIN that LEBRON JAMES WILL NOT be returning to the CAVS!”


HoopsVibe`s Very Quick Call: Rose, an analyst for ESPN, also tweets that the Bulls, Clippers, and Heat are the top three destinations for James.

Of course, all these organizations have issues: the Bulls - a contender because of Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah - have unstable management with GM John Paxson going all 'Fight Club' on former coach Vinny Del Negro; the Clippers have talented players, but an awful owner in Donald Sterling; and the Heat may prefer a big like Chris Bosh as a sidekick to Dwyane Wade.

The Cavaliers aren't out of the sweepstakes, as they have a financial and personal advantage over the competition.

For instance, they can offer James $30 million more than any team. They can also offer an extra year on his max' contract.

And don't forget that James, who can afford to live anywhere in the world during the summer, makes his off-season home in nearby Akron, Ohio, where he grew up.

Clearly, James is comfortable in Cleveland. And clearly, he`s connected to Ohio. This loyalty will be a huge factor in his decision.

Rose may be right: James could still bolt on the Cavaliers. But it`s far from a certainty.

Got thoughts?

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Saturday , Jun , 19 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Remembering Manute Bol: shot-blocker, entertainer, and humanitarian

An associate of former NBA player Manute Bol says Bol has died at a Virginia hospital, where he was being treated for severe kidney trouble and a painful skin condition known as Stevens-Johnsons Syndrome.


HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Manute Bol was a lovely character.

Tall, lanky, and personable, the 7-6 Bol was a favorite of teammates and fans for his shot blocking and unique form on his three point shot.

A fringe player for most of his 10 seasons with Golden State, Miami, Philadelphia, and Washington, Bol sits at 14th on the all-time blocks list.

However, Bol was an MVP in his native Sudan for his humanitarian work which promoted reconciliation in the war-torn African nation. And Bol was also part of the league going global, where teams started looking outside the United States for talent.

Rest In Peace to the lovable Manute.

(Manute Bol: One of a kind.)

Get at us with your memories of the 7-6 Sudanese post!




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Wednesday , Jun , 16 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Does Dwyane Wade deserve his own County?

Dwyane Wade is getting his own county.

By unanimous vote, Miami-Dade County commissioners declared Tuesday that the area would be known as "Miami-Wade County" from July 1-7, a week that coincides with the start of NBA free agency.

The resolution was written "in recognition of all that Dwyane Wade has done for the visibility, stature and national image" of the county.

Wade will become a free agent July 1, which means he could leave the Miami Heat. Wade repeatedly has said he hopes to stay in Miami, but only if the Heat's roster is upgraded.


HoopsVibe's Very Quick News: There's no limit. Teams, cities, counties, states, mayors, and even presidents will do almost anything to help their team of choice sign or retain the NBA's top talents.

Take the latest example out of Florida. Miami is renaming its county as homage to superstar Dwyane Wade, who is the game's second biggest free agent behind LeBron James.

Of course, these politicians aren't stupid. Wade generates significant revenue for local businesses and they want him in South Beach.   

However, Wade deserves credit. Unlike his free agent peers, 'Flash' has publicly expressed a desire to re-sign with the Heat and wants to recruit others to help him win multiple championships.

Perhaps, such loyalty is deserving of a county -even if it's just for a week.

Got thoughts on Wade-County? 

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Sunday , Jun , 13 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Ray Allen to join Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami?

So why stop there?

The latest buzz has Ray Allen looking to bolt the Celtics when he becomes free on July 1 to join Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami.


HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Ray-Ray in The MIA makes sense.

The 2010 playoff showed The Big Three is no more for the Boston Celtics. Instead of relying specifically on Ray Allen, Kevin Garnett, and Paul Pierce, the green-and-white is succeeding with a team-first approach.

Everyone has contributed. In fact, Allen, Garnett, and Pierce have - at one time or another - struggled during the club's second-season run.

Perhaps, Boston GM Danny Ainge lets his veteran sharpshooter leave via free agency and signs/trades for a younger two-guard. Remember, Ainge allegedly shopped Allen at the trade deadline, trying to swap his expiring contract for scorer Kevin Martin. 

Miami would be heaven for Allen. He'd get open looks galore with opposing defenses doubling Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh -if he signs with the Heat.  Wade, Bosh, and Allen would together vault Miami to the top of the Eastern Conference.

One thing is certain: The Big Three is on their last legs in Boston.   

Got thoughts on Ray Allen in Miami?