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Thursday, February 18, 2010
Sources: Heat unable to acquire Boozer

By Marc Stein and Chad Ford
ESPN.com

The Miami Heat spent the final hour-plus before the NBA's Thursday afternoon trading deadline trying to convince the Utah Jazz to surrender Carlos Boozer, according to NBA front-office sources.

The Jazz, though, would not relent before the trade buzzer sounded, one source close to the process told ESPN The Magazine's Ric Bucher.

One source with knowledge of Utah's thinking told ESPN.com from the start of Thursday's discussions that a trade was "unlikely," but the teams were still talking entering the last half-hour before the deadline hit.

ESPN.com reported earlier Thursday that the Heat and Jazz had opened discussions on a Boozer deal. Yahoo! Sports reported that the Wizards were recruited as a third team to try to help facilitate the deal, but one source told ESPN.com that the Wizards were no longer involved in the talks.

With its courting of Amare Stoudemire fading Wednesday, Miami turned its attention to Boozer in its ongoing quest to acquire a marquee frontcourt player to keep star guard Dwyane Wade happy before Wade becomes a free agent July 1.

Armed with the expiring contracts of Udonis Haslem and Quentin Richardson, Miami made an "unexpected" offer to the Jazz on Thursday morning, one source said.

Utah, though, has insisted for weeks that it prefers to keep Boozer for the rest of the season, even though he can leave the Jazz without compensation this summer as an unrestricted free agent.

One version of the proposed deal would have sent Boozer and Washington's Mike James to Miami; Haslem and Richardson to Utah from Miami; and Miami's Carlos Arroyo, Utah's Kyrylo Fesenko and perhaps another player to the Wizards.

Yet one source said that Miami's Michael Beasley and Mario Chalmers were also discussed along with Utah's Kyle Korver.

Marc Stein is a senior NBA writer for ESPN.com. Chad Ford is an ESPN NBA Insider.