Monday, December 29, 2014

Bosh stays put; Lin signs with Lakers

LeBron James is going home - but Chris Bosh will remain in Miami to pick up the pieces.

James' decision had put the Heat's free agency plans on hold for several intense days, but the rebuilding process moved quickly for team president Pat Riley after the stunning announcement. It didn't take long for Bosh - who all along said he wanted to stay in Miami - to sign off on a return to the Heat with what Yahoo! Sports reported was a five-year, $118 million deal.

Wade and Udonis Haslem were expected to re-sign with the Heat as well.

Linsanity to L.A.

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The Lakers have acquired point guard Jeremy Lin from the Houston Rockets, along with the Rockets' first-round draft pick next year, according to a person familiar with the situation. The Lakers will send cash and rights to an undisclosed overseas player to the Rockets.

The Rockets were desperate to unload Lin to give them room to make a maximum-contract offer to free-agent forward Chris Bosh.

The Lakers have not officially been told they are out of the running for Carmelo Anthony - though there have been reports he narrowed his choices to Chicago and New York - and they still have enough money to offer him close to a maximum contract if they renounce Ryan Kelly, Kent Bazemore, and Kendall Marshall.

Lin, who turns 26 next month, has one more year and $14.9 million remaining on his contract, though the cap number is actually $8.4 million because of a quirk in the NBA's collective bargaining agreement.

The Lakers can free up another $6 million by waiving Steve Nash and spreading his $9.7-million contract over the next three years. It was unclear if they would do that if they didn't get Anthony.

The Rockets' first-round pick is protected to some degree, but the Lakers believe it will be theirs to use next June because the Rockets' record will be good enough to fall out of pick protection.

Lin fits the Lakers' bill for a player with a short deal, allowing them to keep financial flexibility heading into next summer, when Kevin Love or LaMarcus Aldridge could become free agents. The year after that, Kevin Durant could become a free agent.

Los Angeles also re-signed guard Nick Young.

Suns trade for Thomas

The Kings have agreed to a sign-and-trade with Phoenix for guard Isaiah Thomas, per a league source.

In exchange the Kings will receive a $7 million trade exception in the deal along with the draft rights to Alex Oriakh, a 6-foot-9 power forward who was a second round pick of the Suns in 2013.

Thomas was a restricted free agent. He averaged 20.3 points and 6.3 assists and became expendable when the Kings agreed to a three-year deal with Darren Collison. - Staff and wire reports

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