Jacari McRae \ Aug 3rd, 2019
In 2010, the Miami Heat pulled off the biggest free agency coup in NBA history signing Lebron James and Chris Bosh to join Dwyane Wade in Miami. During their four seasons together in Miami, the Heat went on to win two championships in four NBA Finals appearances. While Chris Bosh became a member of the Heat’s Big Three, there’s been reports over the years that suggested that Carmelo Anthony was supposed to be the third piece of the Heat’s Big Three in 2010.
According to Howard Beck’s Bleacher Report story, James said on a conference call with Anthony and Wade in 2006, “Listen. I think I’m going to do a three-year extension, because in 2010 we can become free agents at the peak, right there in the prime of our career.”
Anthony instead opted for a longer contract with the Denver Nuggets that kept him out of that free-agency pool. The 10-time all-star confirmed the conversation on ESPN First Take on Friday morning during his 1-on-1 conversation with Stephen A. Smith (Start video at 5:32).
“It was take the three-year deal, Anthony said. “Let’s see what happens. At that point of time, I was so naive to that. I didn’t know the business of basketball back then. I didn’t know what it mean to take a three-year deal as opposed to a five-year deal. I’m looking at i’m not leaving this money with two years on the table. And I want to be here [In Denver]. ”
“Honestly, we didn’t know it was going to happen,” Anthony later added. “It was just conversations at that point of time. We always said we wanted to play with each other. We didn’t know that was going to come into fruition. We didn’t even know how that was going to happen. At that point of time, when they brought that to me, It was just an idea.”
While the Heat’s Big 3 of Wade, James, and Bosh won multiple titles, Anthony has yet to make an NBA Finals appearance.
Would a James-Wade-Anthony trio have had the same success as the James-Wade-Bosh trio? That depends on how much Carmelo would’ve been willing to sacrifice to make it work. Before Lebron made his decision to join the Heat, there was widespread skepticism as to whether James and Wade could coexist, and they figured it out. And that’s thanks to the sacrifices both Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh made. Wade took a step back and became the clear number two option and Bosh was the third option. As a third option, Bosh had nights were he didn’t score the ball as much.
Now would Carmelo have done the same? We will never know. But a James-Wade-Anthony trio is something to think about every once in a while.
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Main Image Credit: Embed from Getty Images