If Monday’s hysteria over an Instagram message was any indication, then NBA free agency is going to be a circus.
Savannah James set off a storm of speculation on Sunday evening when she posted to her Instagram account a picture of her home state of Ohio with a large star representing Akron, her hometown. James, of course, is the wife of LeBron James, so the message she included with the picture quickly went viral on the Internet.
“Home sweet home!! The countdown is real! #330,” Savannah James wrote.
Both LeBron and Savannah James are from Akron, and there has been speculation for several years that LeBron would consider returning to the Cleveland Cavaliers after the 2013-14 season. According to a source close to the James family, the cryptic message was nothing more than Savannah expressing her excitement about going home for the summer. The James family owns a house in Akron and they spend the summers there.
This is the first offseason to include an early termination option in LeBron’s contract. He has until Monday to decide whether or not to opt out of his current contract with the Heat. Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem also have options on their contracts.
James hasn’t given any indication whether he will opt out of his contract and explore free agency, or opt in with the Heat for next season at $20 million. On Monday, Carmelo Anthony opted out of his contract with the Knicks. Anthony has been linked with the Heat and Bulls, among other teams. The Houston Rockets reportedly will pursue James if he becomes a free agent.
The Heat has a first-round draft pick for the first time since 2012, and the team’s vice president of player personnel, Chet Kammerer, said on Monday that the Heat is optimistic it can find value at the 26th pick. Heat president Pat Riley could give the green light on selecting a player, or he and general manager Andy Elisburg could ultimately decide to trade the pick.
“At this point I think we would like to add someone on our roster that would be a rookie and could contribute,” Kammerer said.