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Utah Jazz: Boozer keeps trade rumors swirling with Miami his latest love

Published: Tuesday, July 21 2009 12:00 a.m. MDT

If Carlos Boozer gets his way, he could soon be in a Miami Heat uniform.

Boozer told the Miami Herald on Monday that the Heat are his No. 1 choice for his next team once the Utah Jazz trade the power forward as expected.

"There are so many reasons I feel at home here, and I would love to be part of the Heat organization," Boozer told the Herald. "We first came here for tax reasons and fell in love with it. We love the palm trees, the laid-back attitude, the sun, quality of life. It's like paradise here, and I would love to be part of the Heat. They're a very good team, and I'm real close to some of the guys. Dwyane and I started to get close at the Athens Olympics in 2004, and I'd love to play on his team. Plus, I already live here. I'm just waiting to see what happens."

Boozer claimed that he and the Jazz have "mutually agreed" to a trade and openly welcomed a potential reunion with Olympic teammate Dwayne Wade.

The Miami Herald jumped the gun when it initially reported Boozer's comments on its Web site Monday afternoon. A headline initially posted with the article indicated that a trade between Utah and Miami involving Boozer had already been completed. The Herald later pulled the errant headline from its site.

Boozer's stamp of approval on being sent to Miami came about as speculation continues to mount on which team will be the one to pry the former NBA all-star from the Jazz.

Among the more intriguing rumors that surfaced on Monday was a three-team deal reported by Bulls.com that would send Shane Battier and Carl Landry from the Houston Rockets to Utah, Boozer to Chicago, Jerome James and Tyrus Thomas from the Bulls and Kyrylo Fesenko from the Jazz to the Rockets.

The Bulls have shown interest in acquiring Boozer in recent weeks as a way to clear cap space in order to pursue a big-ticket free agent in 2010.

Previous rumored deals involving Chicago had the team shipping off combo guard Kirk Hinrich to another team. That scenario is something the Bulls have become more reluctant to make a reality. Since the departure of Ben Gordon to Detroit, trading Hinrich as well would leave them with little depth in their backcourt.

e-mail: jcoon@desnews.com

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