JULY 30TH: The deal is finally official, the team announced, after Bosh spent much of the month traveling overseas.
“Chris Bosh is a two-time NBA champion and one of the most versatile big men in the league,” Heat president Pat Riley said. “His unique skillset makes him one of the best players in the game today. I’ve always felt he was committed to this organization, this staff and this city. I think he’s going to have the opportunity of a lifetime leading this team next season and having the nine-time NBA All-Star back in the fold was a big key for us. We are very blessed to have him.”
JULY 11TH: The Heat and Chris Bosh are finalizing an agreement on a five-year deal for the maximum salary, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports (Twitter link). The Rockets believed they would get Bosh to commit to their offer of the maximum, which by rule was only for four years, with lower annual raises, but the Henry Thomas client ultimately spurned Houston to remain with the Heat. The new max deal will include a starting salary of $20,644,400, and total $118,705,300 over the life of the contract.
Bosh and his wife love living Miami, and their affection for South Florida was a strong factor in the decision, tweets Jeff Goodman of ESPN.com. It’s a major victory for the Heat and team president Pat Riley, who’ll know the team will at least keep one of its three stars after LeBron James bolted for the Cavs. The Lakers and Bosh reportedly had mutual interest, too, but ultimately it came down to a decision between the Rockets and Heat.
Before the Rockets made their push, Bosh seemed like a strong bet to return to Miami, having said publicly that he would return. Still, that seemed to hinge on the return of LeBron, and when he left for Cleveland, Bosh seemed destined to follow the four-time MVP out of Miami.
Instead, the Heat will retain the No. 3 player in the Hoops Rumors Free Agent Power Rankings. As Charlie Adams of Hoops Rumors wrote when he examined Bosh’s free agent stock, Bosh had plenty of leverage to secure a lucrative payday in a destination of his choice after establishing himself as an athletic force defensively and a versatile scorer.
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