The buzz is real and the dominos have started to fall as the yearly questions remain. What will the Cavs do this offseason, where will Lebron go after next season, and what will the roster look like moving forward?
Lebron keeps signing short term deals to keep Dan Gilbert honest, and until he signs a long term contract, every offseason will be a chess match between the front office, Lebron, and roster decisions. And just last night, the first piece was moved when general manager, David Griffin, resigned. According to a source familiar with the negotiations, Griffin did not want to stay, with Gilbert’s vision for the franchise being different from his… Which makes you wonder. What did the puppeteer Lebron have in all of this, if any? He appears to claim none in this very cryptic tweet. (Is one title enough?)
As a result, the future of the Cavaliers remains dicey and a few scenarios could set them back if they aren’t careful.
Scenario 1 – The Cavs trade Kevin Love (possibly others) for Paul George of the Indiana Pacers in the hopes that he remains in Cleveland long term, as it’s understood that Paul George wants to sign with his home state team, The Los Angeles Lakers, at the end of next season. So, is a potential “rent a player” worth the risk for the Cavs? In a worst case scenario the Cavs would trade Kevin Love, only to see Paul George leave as well in 2018. Although, the Cavs might pull that string regardless as Lebron’s window of opportunity narrows on the backend of his career.
Scenario 2 – Paul George joins the Lakers in 2018, either by way of the Cavs or not. At that point the Lakers roster would theoretically be much improved with a handful of young and talented players like Brandon Ingram and Lonzo Ball alongside Paul George.
Furthermore, Lebron has mentioned his desire to be the first billion dollar athlete. What better city than Los Angeles to achieve that? He’s already involved with numerous projects in Hollywood, and a young team could help him extend his career by shouldering less of the minutes.
Scenario 3 – Lebron and Paul George join the Los Angeles Clippers. Again, Lebron’s off the court ventures are possible but a move to the Clippers would offer a whole new challenge for Lebron at a franchise starving for success, much like the Cavaliers were when he returned. The Clippers also recently acquired NBA legend, Jerry West, as part of their front office and Lebron very much respects and pays homage to the history of the game. Could Jerry West be enough to lure him in?
Scenario 4 – The Cavs trade Kyrie Irving in what would be the dumbest move in the history of Cleveland sports. And there have been some real dumb ones. There is no need to elaborate on this one. It would be ridiculous.
In the end, a lot could happen over the next few days, and weeks, and the Cavaliers have some big decisions to be made. In my opinion, they should do whatever Lebron demands. He’s a once in a lifetime player that would likely be playing elsewhere had he not been born just outside of Cleveland. Talk about the golden ticket. You can’t give him any reason to leave so winning NOW is key. Cleveland is a small market team with a big market player. (Generational player)
That likely won’t be the case for Cleveland, ten years from now.