Tuesday night at Quicken Loans Arena, LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Derrick Rose will take the floor together for the first time as Cleveland Cavaliers teammates.
The odds of this sight occurring back in 2010 would have been zero, which is why on multiple occasions, all three players have openly said it’s still surreal they are on the same team.
James and Wade, of course, formed the Big Three in Miami in the 2010-11 season with Chris Bosh while Rose was the lone alpha on the up-and-coming Bulls.
At the time, many people thought Rose didn’t want to play with James and Wade and assumed he refused to do any recruiting during the free agency process.
Seven years later, Rose told the media at the Cavs’ shootaround today that he did recruit LeBron and Wade to come play in Chicago, but the Bulls just never told anyone of his efforts.
“Oh yeah, yeah, I tried,” Rose told reporters when asked if he wanted James and Wade on the Bulls in 2010. “People always said that I didn’t recruit. I tried to recruit. I put out the video but it wasn’t for me to say that. I felt like it was for the organization to say that.
“(The Bulls) didn’t say anything about it. They sent it, I don’t know if they really actually looked at it or played the video but I made the video, but at the time it really wasn’t for me to say that.”
Rose said he filmed a video in which he recruited James, Wade and Bosh to come join him on the Bulls. James told Cavs beat writer Jason Lloyd of The Athletic that Rose reached out to him personally as well.
“He was basically saying, ‘Everybody is out here saying that I don’t want you to come here and saying that we can’t play together,'” James told The Athletic. “He said, ‘I’d love for you to come to Chicago because all I care about is winning.'”
Rose shocked the world in 2011 by winning the regular-season MVP award, becoming the youngest player in league history (22) to do it.
The Chicago native led the Bulls to the No. 1 seed in the East and had people thinking a young hometown kid could take his team to The Finals in just his third season.
Rose’s Bulls faced off against LeBron and the Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals, with Miami winning the series 4-1.
James, Wade and Bosh were too much for Rose alone to dethrone. It was clear he was going to need more help on the offensive end.
Miami ended up winning two championships in the Big Three era while Rose dealt with knee injuries that robbed him of his prime.
Now, James, Wade and Rose are in the same starting lineup for the Cavs and will look to win a championship together in The Land.
The trio of All-Stars will have to develop their chemistry quickly, as opening night is a week away.
James has been sidelined with an ankle injury but he will play 25-to-30 minutes in the final two preseason games.