During the 2010 NBA offseason, LeBron James became the center of controversy when he left his hometown team, the Cleveland Cavaliers, to team up with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami. James, Wade, and Bosh helped the Heat make four consecutive trips to the NBA Finals and win two NBA championship titles. The “Big Three” era is undeniably one of the best things that happened in the Heat’s franchise history.
However, it was revealed that the Heat were not the only choice James and Wade had in the 2010 NBA free agency period. In a recent appearance on the Knuckleheads podcast with former NBA players Quentin Richardson and Darius Miles (transcribed by USA Today’s LeBron Wire), Wade talked about his free agency conversation with James and how they almost ended up forming the Chicago Bulls’ superteam with Derrick Rose, Luol Deng, and Joakim Noah.
“I remember talking to Bron he was like, ‘Where your head at?’ I said, ‘My head is in winning, where your head at?’ He was like, ‘Same thing, let’s rock together.’ I’m like, ‘Cool! Let’s do it.’ When we was trying to make a decision of what city we wanted to play in or what we wanted to be, we had to keep our options open. Chicago was on the top of both of our lists. They had two max contracts and they had a young [Derrick Rose]. They had a Luol Deng, they had [Joakim] Noah, they had all these pieces. So I’m like, ‘In Chicago, in one of the biggest markets?'”
Dwyane Wade is retired, but he's still a hot free agent https://t.co/2rj41WZLHk— New York Post Sports (@nypostsports) April 23, 2019
It’s intriguing to know what could have happened if LeBron James and Dwyane Wade chose the Bulls instead of the Heat during the 2010 NBA free agency period. The Bulls’ potential starting lineup of Derrick Rose, Wade, James, Luol Deng, and Joakim Noah would have been a huge headache to any powerhouse teams in the league and could have won multiple NBA championship titles. With the presence of Wade and James, Rose would have a lesser load to carry on his shoulders, which could have helped him preserve his body and avoid injuries.
However, during that time, James and Wade were more interested in forming a “Big Three” with Chris Bosh and the only team who had enough cap space to sign them all was the Heat. Rose, Deng, and Noah would be incredible teammates in Chicago, but James and Wade thought that Bosh was the “perfect match.” The Heat’s “Big Three” succeeded as they won back-to-back NBA championship titles in 2012 and 2013, but James decided to leave Wade and Bosh after four years of playing together.
As of now, both Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade are already officially retired, while LeBron James is still aiming to win another NBA championship with the Los Angeles Lakers.