Will a Bad Economy Ruin LeBron, Wade and Bosh's 2010 Plans?

November, 13, 2009
11/13/09
8:28
PM ET
Ford By Chad Ford
ESPN.com
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This past week I've been crunching salary cap numbers after a Heat source told me they were trying to find a way to lure both LeBron James and Chris Bosh to Miami to play with Dwyane Wade this summer.

I just finished a long article detailing three scenarios on how Dream Team Miami could happen (Insider).

One league source told me that LeBron, Wade and Bosh have all talked about playing together. Now, given the economy, the reality has changed. I think Miami is the only team with the financial flexibility to make such a scenario happen. However, had the economy not tanked last year, a number of teams would've had the cap room to bring at least two of them together.

In the summer of 2008 we were projecting a $64 million cap for the summer of 2010. Now the league has warned teams that the cap may fall all the way down to between $50 and $53 million next summer. That's an $11 to 14 million difference.

Had the cap stayed on its usual course, the Heat would've been $31 to $35 million under with Dwyane Wade's cap hold on the books (meaning they could've signed two max players in addition to Wade). The Knicks and Nets would've been $35 to $40 million under -- enough cap room to sign two superstars. And even the Cavs would've had the room to lure another big-time free agent to play alongside LeBron.

But with the cap projected to go down this year, it appears that Miami is the only team capable of pulling something like this off -- and even that is a long shot now.

Chad Ford

Senior Writer, NBA Insider

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