While it is not exactly known how many teams have talked with agent Rich Paul, who is based in Cleveland, the Phoenix Suns, Miami Heat, Houston Rockets, Cleveland Cavaliers, Los Angeles Lakers and Dallas Mavericks are believed to the most interested.
James has made it clear via his Twitter feed that he is spending the early days of his free agency on vacation with his family and is scheduled to attend the World Cup final in Brazil on July 13. Paul is meeting with the respective team officials on his own, sources said.
James wants a max deal but some believe if he doesn’t receive an offer that he likes, James will be willing to sign a two-year deal with an early termination option after next season.
Miami, for its part, must upgrade their roster and also has to re-sign Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh. The Heat are said to be very interested in signing Anthony Morrow, Alan Anderson and Pau Gasol to low-dollar deals.
Oklahoma City, San Antonio and New York are also interested signing Gasol to an inexpensive contract.
Other happenings around the NBA.
The Bulls traded for Mirotic's rights in 2011 when he was the No. 23 pick in the draft and have watched as he's developed into one of the best forwards in Europe. Known for his shooting touch, the 6-foot-10 Mirotic secured a buyout for $3 million with Real Madrid, according to several reports in Europe. He is now free to join the NBA.
However, the Bulls will need to make some roster moves in order to sign the 23-year old as he is not subject to the rookie wage scale.
- Speaking of Anthony, he verbally received a five-year $129 million deal from the New York Knicks – which is the max that Anthony ca receive -- on July 3. Anthony did not give the Knicks an answer or a timetable on his decision Thursday night, a source said. He will take the long weekend to think things through, the source said.
Anthony has also met with the Los Angeles Lakers, Chicago Bulls, Dallas Mavericks and Houston Rockets.
- The Houston Rockets are going to pursue Chris Bosh, if they don’t win the Anthony free agent sweepstakes according to sources familiar with the situation.
The widespread assumption around the league, when free agency commenced on July 1, was that James, Wade and Bosh had all but agreed to return to the Heat after hashing out new annual salaries among themselves.
Most league observers continue to believe that all three players will return to the Heat with Bosh and Wade taking pay cuts.
However, the Rockets are determined to test Bosh's resolve in the event Anthony decides to sign elsewhere.
Houston needs a big forward with 3-point range, which Bosh can provide, in its search for the ideal frontcourt sidekick to All-Star center Dwight Howard.
- Chris Kaman agreed to a two-year, $9.8 million dollar contract with the Portland Trail Blazers according to reports on July 4.
Kaman, 32, averaged 10.4 points and 5.9 rebounds in a career-low 18.9 minutes last season. He is expected to serve as starting center Robin Lopez’s backup next season.
The deal will become official when the league-wide moratorium on signings ends July 10.
The Blazers originally were pursuing Spencer Hawes but decided to turn to Kaman when he began receiving interest from Golden State, Phoenix and the Los Angeles Clippers among other teams.
- Dirk Nowitzki will stay with the Dallas Mavericks after agreeing to three-year, $30 million contract according to sources.
The deal, sources said, contains a player option that would allow Nowitzki to return to free agency in the summer of 2016 and preserves the rare no-trade clause he had in his last contract.
- If Anthony doesn’t sign with the Mavericks, Dallas is expected to go hard after restricted free-agent Chandler Parsons along with unrestricted free agents Luol Deng and Trevor Ariza.
- Darren Collison has reportedly agreed to a three-year, $16 million dollar contract according ESPNLos Angeles on July 3. Collison opted out of the final year of his contract with the Los Angeles Clippers.
- The Atlanta Hawks snagged Thabo Sefoloshia with a three-year, $12 million deal according to reports on July 3.
- Patrick Patterson will stay with the Toronto Raptors after reportedly agreeing to a three-year, $18 million contract with the team on July 4.
-Restricted free agent Gordon Hayward will meet with the Charlotte Hornets sometime next week according to the Charlotte Observer. Cleveland and Phoenix are also interested in the 24-year old.
- On July 3, Kyle Lowry agreed to return to the Toronto Raptors (4-years, $48 million), Avery Bradley re-upped with the Boston Celtics (fou-years, $32 million), Patty Mills and the San Antonio Spurs agreed to a three-year, $12 millon contract while Ben Gordon will be in Orlando this season, after agreeing to a two-year, $9 million contract. C.J. Miles also has changed addresses as he will play for the Indiana Pacers (four-years, $18 million).
- Former Brooklyn Nets point guard Shaun Livingston agreed to a three-year deal with the Golden State Warriors on July 1.
-The Washington Wizards and center Marcin Gortat verbally agreed to a five-year, $60 million deal on July 1.
- On July 1, the Detroit Pistons reportedly agreed to a three-year contract with Jodie Meeks and a one-year with Cartier Martin.
-Channing Frye is drawing interest from the Phoenix Suns, Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors according to reports.
- Kent Bazemore is reportedly drawing interest from Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Los Angeles Lakers, Phoenix and Chicago.
- Miami, Oklahoma City and the Los Angeles Clippers are interested in veteran Caron Butler.
- Kyrie Irving is staying put in Cleveland, agreeing to a max-five-$90 million deal on July 1.
- Luol Deng is drawing interest from multiple teams including the Atlanta Hawks, Los Angeles Lakers and Chicago.