(CBS) As free agency is set to open Tuesday, LeBron James wants a maximum salary for next season, ESPN.com reported Monday afternoon.
The maximum salary that James — who opted out of his contract with the Heat last week but is widely believed to be focused on re-signing in Miami after Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade also opted out — can command is projected to be $22.2 million for next season. This appears to be an indication that James wants Bosh and Wade to be the ones to sacrifice money to make room to lure premier free agents, such as Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry, who the Heat have interest in.
James has never been the highest-paid player on his team in his entire NBA career, and he sacrificed millions when he signed with Miami in 2010.
At least initially, James also won’t be attending meetings to hear teams’ pitches, ESPN.com reported. He’s going to instead let agent Rich Paul handle preliminary talks, which will surely center around suitors explaining a path to offer max money while building a championship team.