Stern: James, Wade, Bosh didn’t break rules with free agency talk
In the face of mounting reports of collusion, NBA commissioner David Stern said LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh violated no league rules in discussing free agency among themselves and that the league isn’t investigating how the Miami Heat managed to land all three.
“Players are going to talk, they’re going to do that,’’ Stern said from an owners meeting in Las Vegas. “But the club did nothing wrong as far as we know. No formal complaints were levied at our Board of Governors meeting.’’
The Cleveland Plain Dealer had a piece Sunday that offered evidence James hatched a plan two years ago to hook up in Miami with Wade.
Several owners, including Mark Cuban of Dallas, have suggested there may have been collusion.
“Our players are totally within their rights to seek employment with any other team,” Stern said. “That’s something we embrace. That’s our system.
“Miami did a pretty good job of clearing out cap space and putting together a plan.”
Stern did needle James for his orchestrated, made-for-TV special to announce his exit from Cleveland.
“The advice that he received on this was poor,” he said. “The performance was fine. His honesty and his integrity, I think, shined through. But this decision was ill-conceived.”
Stern also took action against Cleveland owner Dan Gilbert, fining him $100,000 for harshly criticizing James.
Fisher remains in L.A.
LOS ANGELES — Although Derek Fisher thought about joining that burgeoning super team in Miami, he’s staying in the Los Angeles Lakers’ own collection of stars.
The veteran point guard was asking for at least $5 million per season. Terms of the deal were not available. Fisher averaged 7.5 points and 2.5 assists last year and is a leader in the locker room.
Haslem stays in Miami
MIAMI — Add Udonis Haslem to the list of players taking less money to play for the Miami Heat next season. The reserve power forward signed a five-year deal worth around $20 million, roughly $14 million less than he could have received if he accepted more lucrative offers from Dallas and Denver.
Haslem has averaged 10.0 points and 8.1 rebounds in seven Miami seasons and is a favorite of Dwyane Wade’s.
Charlotte center Tyson Chandler says he’s been told he’s being traded to the Raptors amid a report Toronto is also poised to send Hedo Turkoglu to Phoenix. Details were pending.
Orlando agreed to a deal with free agent swing man Quentin Richardson, who averaged 8.9 points and 4.9 rebounds for Miami last year.
LeBron James, left, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh talked about free agency among themselves – and that’s OK with the NBA.