Teams shut out of the LeBron James chase already are shifting to their Plan Bs.
The Knicks finalized plans Thursday night to send David Lee to the Warriors in a sign-and-trade that sends Anthony Randolph, Kelenna Azubuike to the Knicks, a person with knowledge of the deal told CBSSports.com. The deal was arranged prior to LeBron James' announcement and was contingent on James choosing a team other than the Knicks. Of course, he did. Lee gets a six-year, $80 million deal.
While Miami has a five-year, approximately $28 million offer on the table for free-agent small forward Mike Miller, the Knicks are prepared to swoop in and foil Pat Riley's plan to secure a shooter for James and Dwyane Wade. According to an executive familiar with the Knicks' plan, New York is prepared to outbid Miami for Miller if James says no to them. The Knicks can offer about $12 million more, and that's too much money for Miller, 29, to leave on the table. There also will be competition for Chicago, sources say, as the Knicks, Bulls and Heat are expected to get into a bidding war for complementary players. The Heat will get outbid money-wise because their cap space will be occupied by LeBron, Wade and Bosh, so Riley's sales pitch will be: Come win championships and play for the minimum.
Mavs coach Rick Carlisle's recruiting efforts with center Brendan Haywood paid off, as Haywood agreed to a six-year, $55 million deal to stay in Dallas. The sixth year is non-guaranteed, according to sources. ... Jermaine O'Neal has accepted a two-year deal from Boston at the mid-level exception of $5.765 million per year to bolster the Celtics' frontcourt with center Kendrick Perkins out six months with a knee injury suffered in the NBA Finals. ... The Cavs made a push Thursday to acquire point guard Jonny Flynn from Minnesota, a move to appease James, whose marketing company, LRMR, also represents Flynn. Timberwolves GM David Kahn, however, rebuffed Cleveland's overtures. ... Speaking of marketing, Yahoo! Sports reported that New Orleans All-Star point guard Chris Paul, who joined James in Akron this week for part of his Nike camp, has left agent Aaron Goodwin and will be represented by LRMR -- which, for now, is based in Cleveland, but after Thursday night, who knows?