Chris Bosh Details Pat Riley’s Brilliant Sales Pitch to Convince the Raptors Star to Join Miami – Sports Illustrated

The Toronto Raptors never really had stood a chance in the Chris Bosh sweepstakes when Pat Riley flashed his championship rings to lure Bosh to the Miami Heat

What was Bryan Colangelo supposed to do? What could he have said to keep Chris Bosh with the Toronto Raptors back in the summer of 2010? As it turns out, Colangelo never really had a chance.

Sure, an opportunity to play alongside LeBron James and Dwyane Wade in Miami was a major deciding factor in Bosh’s eventual decision to head to South Beach in 2010, but the magic of Pat Riley certainly helped close the deal, as Bosh explained in his Hall of Fame induction speech Saturday night.

Just as Riley was wrapping up his sales pitch to Bosh, the then-six-time NBA champion pulled out a velvet bag full of his championship rings, Bosh said. Riley opened the bag and handed Bosh a ring.

“You give it back to me when we win one together,” Bosh recalled Riley saying.

Looking back on the moment, Bosh said it was crazy. He hadn’t even agreed to sign with the Heat at the time and here was Riley giving away one of his rings.

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“But that’s Pat,” Bosh joked.

Bosh, however, never returned the ring. Even after back-to-back championships in 2012 and 2013, Bosh held onto the ring, searching, he said, for the right moment to give it back.

Well, Saturday night was that moment. In the middle of Bosh’s speech, he paused to return the ring to Riley who sat on stage to Bosh’s left. The two Hall of Famers embraced for a moment, shared a laugh, and then returned to continue the speech.

Considering that 2010-11 Raptors team was led by a group that included Andrea Bargnani, Leandro Barbosa, Linas Kleiza, and Jarrett Jack, Colangelo and the Raptors didn’t have much of an argument to make for why Bosh should have returned. 

Further Reading

Raptors confirm they’ll play in Toronto next season

Raptors release their preseason schedule

Masai Ujiri details his vision for the Raptors’ season