In the summer of 2000, rising star Tracy McGrady was traded to the Orlando Magic by the Toronto Raptors in a sign-and-trade deal. McGrady played four seasons with the Magic and he made the All-Star team each season.
However, Tracy McGrady almost played for the other team that resides in Florida, the Miami Heat.
Durant an appearance with the Ringer's Bill Simmons, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst tells the story about how Heat president Pat Riley offered McGrady a max contract nearly 20 years ago, via Bryan Kalbrosky of Hoops Hype:
“They bring him down on a private jet and they bring him to Alonzo Mourning‘s house on the same day. And they have drinks and they hang out and you know Zo was, like, one of the coolest guys in the league. He still is one of the coolest guys in the league. They’re chilling at Zo’s house and all of a sudden, this speedboat pulls up. And Zo says, ‘Hey Tracy, let’s go for a ride.’ They get into the speedboat. They hit go and the speedboat goes 80 miles an hour across Biscayne Bay, zapping by the arena, downtown Miami, beautiful. It pulls in to Pat Riley's house down the cove. And Riley’s standing there holding the max contract offer.”
Just imagine if Twitter was around back then. There would have been memes for days. Unfortunately for Riley and the Heat, Tracy McGrady chose the Magic instead, in part because he was going to join forces with Grant Hill, who was also a free agent and signed with Orlando.
McGrady never won a championship, but he still made the Hall of Fame after having an illustrious career. Before the injuries took a toll on his body, T-Mac was a walking bucket. He won the regular-season scoring title two times and made the All-Star team seven times.