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Lakers free agency 2014: Carmelo Anthony, LeBron James lead Lakers' interest

Midnight struck on the East coast, clearing way for Mitch Kupchak and the Lakers to being their free agency process. Here's a recap of the Lakers' first batch of moves.

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Free agency has offiically begun in the NBA and the names are flying. At the top of the list of premium free agents sit LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony, but the Los Angeles Lakers registered interest in a number of players once the clock struck midnight on the East coast.

LeBron takes a step back

The Lakers reached out to LeBron James' agent, Rich Paul, to officially register their interest in the two-time champion. James is removed from his free agent process for now, instead relying on his agent and management around him to handle opening discussions.

It's unclear which teams will ultimately have an opportunity to pitch James on a new future in a new city, and we may not get a clear picture on his process until the initial dust clears.

In the meantime, it's worth keeping an eye on the remainder of the "Big Three." How they handle free agency could be a signal in their expecations for James, though it's safe to assume everything will wait on James. The trio is also expected to allow Miami Heat president Pat Riley time to piece together a reformed roster to help the Heat continue their streak of reaching the NBA Finals before making any decisions on a return.

Chris Bosh has been floated as a player the Lakers are interested in, but there's no word on any official meeting between the sides.

The Carmelo Anthony tour

The Carmelo Anthony tour kicks off Tuesday when he meets with the Chicago Bulls. Chicago will give the first pitch to the superstar free agent. They were prepared with photoshops:

Anthony will meet with the Houston Rockets and Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday. Texas' star talent -- Dirk Nowitzki, Dwight Howard and James Harden -- are all expected to be a part of their respective teams' pitch to Anthony.

Los Angeles will host Anthony on Thursday, getting one of the final pitches in before he makes a decision. The New York Knicks anticipate an opportunity to get the final word in with Anthony.

Expect to hear details from each of his meetings over the week.

Wings and things

The common theme in the players Los Angeles has interest in? Wings galore.

The Lakers have a gaping hole at small forward and seem to be exploring every option they'll have to fill out their wing depth. Los Angeles contacted former Laker Trevor Ariza, Luol Deng, Kent Bazemore, Jodie Meeks, Nick Young and Gordon Hayward.

Los Angeles also put in a call to restricted free agent Chandler Parsons, who remains one of the most intriguing players of the free agency period. He's drawing interest from teams around the league, and the Rockets are also pursuing James and Anthony, putting pressure on Rockets general manager Daryl Morey to find a way to make it fit in their salary cap structure.

The Lakers contacted few big men, placing calls to Pau Gasol and Jordan Hill, but seem focused on finding their next small forward. Los Angeles also put in a call to Kyle Lowry, though it seems like a long shot as Lowry is already receiving big pushes from the Toronto Raptors, Heat and Rockets. Isaiah Thomas is another free agent point guard the Lakers have been linked to.

The first day of free agency didn't divulge much by way of details, but gave a quick look at the player Los Angeles could be interested in going forward.

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