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LeBron To Heat?

By Marcus Gilmer in News on Jul 8, 2010 4:00PM

The rumors from overnight and into the morning do not bode well for Bulls fans hanging on to hopes that LeBron James might join Carlos Boozer in Chicago. In fact, things do not bode well for Cleveland, either, and tonight's hour-long tribute to LeBron's ego (which has taken to Twitter) may also be an opportunity to watch the decimation of the collective psyche of an entire fanbase on national television. Published reports from overnight - the Cleveland Plain Dealer, NY Newsday, and, yes, ESPN - all say it's looking more and more like LeBron will join Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami where the Heat will then presumably only be able to pay former members of the Washington Generals to fill out the remaining roster spots. LeBron would also be taking less cash as a deal with the Heat would be in the five-year, $90 million range if the available cap space was split equally amongst the big three but Florida's lack of state income tax would eventually make up the difference.

As for tonight, our pal Phil Rosenthal has a good column on the drama over at the Tribune wherein he argues that complaints about the special are misguided and that, in fact, LeBron and his PR team haven't done enough in terms of marketing LeBron.

If James and company had been on top of this, his Web site would have tracked his whole courtship process. He could have kept an ad-supported video diary, including behind-the-scenes video of meetings with franchises.

Of more importance from a business standpoint, fans would have been invited to register to vote for their team and receive updates through e-mail and Twitter, creating a valuable marketing database.

ESPN's Bill Simmons also has a nice read on the impending (if a tad awkwardly named) "LeBronocalypse."