The Cleveland Cavaliers and Dwyane Wade are on each other's radar.
But as been noted in several places, including our blog, the Cavaliers don't currently have the resources to give Wade anything close to a competitive offer. Just the $3.5 taxpayers midlevel exception. And while they could trade pieces like Iman Shumpert and Channing Frye, they would need to gut even more of the team to get remotely close to what the Heat is currently offering.
An NBA source said late Tuesday that the Cavaliers are not inclined to go through these machinations at the moment.
But there's still one way Wade-to-Cleveland could happen:
If LeBron James, who has opted out, took the minimum for his friend.
That notion was always a little nuts, considering that the players' union would have a conniption about the precedent it sets, and that James has been setting himself up, with one-year-plus-option deals, to make his major payday. Endorsement money aside -- James will be making a reported $1 billion from Nike -- he's going to take every last dollar, as he should.
Now a source close to James has shot it down completely, saying he will not take a minimum under any circumstances. That source also responded to a column in the Miami Herald by insisting that James is not actively recruiting Wade, instead just wanting the best situation for his former teammate.
Many won't believe that; there's been a tendency to blame James for everything that has happened in Miami since he left, and James and Wade recently vacationed in Spain.
But the source was adamant.
Also, the Herald has confirmed that Wade has scheduled a meeting in New York on Wednesday with the Denver Nuggets, who have roughly $22 million in available cap space for the first season.