When Was Miami Big 3 Plan Hatched?
The formation of Miami's Big Three of LeBron James, D-Wade, and Chris Bosh was one of the most controversial and captivating moments in offseason sports over the past decade. One of the biggest conversation topics about the story was how and when these three perennial All-Stars decided they'd join forces in South Beach. Was it during the Olympics back in '08? Did they decide that summer after meeting with each of their prospective teams and analyzing the bigger picture? Did they decide midseason which led to LeBron's break down in the playoffs? Many argued that the three struck up a friendship and made a pact to move to Miami well in advance to their free agency visits, and that it was all a meaningless charade to save face. We should've noticed when all three signed short-term extensions in 2006 with their respective teams.
Verdict: If we're being realistic, it's clear a friendship had been built at the '08 Beijing games between the three. Our best guess is that the thought of all three playing together had been talked about on a minor scale, as part of them discussing possibilities once free agency hit, but nothing concrete was set out until after the 2010 playoffs. With LeBron and the Cavs sitting in pretty good shape going in as arguably a Finals favorite, there is no reason to believe LeBron would agree to leave his hometown team for Miami before a playoff failure. Bosh on the other hand, he was all in from the jump.