Miami Heat forward Chris Bosh had his first direct conversation with Houston Rockets management on Monday morning, inching closer to the possibility of a four-year, $80 million-plus contract, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
Bosh's stance on his intentions has remained unchanged: His preference is to stay with Miami on a new deal and play with LeBron James. Nevertheless, James hasn't committed to a return, and Houston has moved aggressively to secure a deal with Bosh, sources said.
Houston has emerged as Bosh's top choice, should he leave the Heat, sources told Yahoo Sports. The circumstances make the Rockets a natural fit for him. Bosh can play the power forward spot alongside All-Star center Dwight Howard. He can get a maximum contract deal starting in the $20 million range annually. And he can compete for a championship in his home state of Texas, where a partnership with Howard, James Harden and restricted free agent Chandler Parsons makes the Rockets a most formidable threat in the Western Conference.
Houston still needs to unload Jeremy Lin to make space for a max contract offer, but has contingencies in place to get a trade done upon the commitment of a free-agent player, sources said.