With the LeBron James sweepstakes officially underway, Chris Broussard of ESPN.com is reporting (Twitter link) that officials from the Cavs, Mavs, Rockets, and Suns have already met with LeBron’s agent Rich Paul this week in Cleveland.
More on the four-time MVP:
- Rich Paul invited three teams – the Cavs, Mavs, and Suns – to the offices of his Klutch Sports headquarters to listen to pitches. In those meetings, Paul suggested that if Pat Riley cannot quickly put a strong supporting cast together in Miami, LeBron could meet face-to-face with other suitors, writes Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports. Meanwhile, Rockets officials were not granted a meeting with Paul and therefore have decided to focus on Carmelo Anthony.
- ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne reports that Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak is flying to Cleveland to meet with James’ agent, Rich Paul (link via Chris Broussard of ESPN on Twitter).
- One team official who met with James’ agent in Cleveland tells Wojnarowski (Twitter link) that he believes LeBron’s reported exploration of other teams is a “smoke screen.” Presumably, that team official sees this as something of a power play for James to get the players that he wants around him in Miami.
- Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio (Twitter link) confirms “without question” that the Cavaliers were one of the teams that had a sit down with Paul.
- The three finalists for James’ services could return to Cleveland early next week to make presentations with Paul and LeBron present, tweets Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports.
- Wojnarowski also tweets that an official who was part of meetings says “There’s clearly a breakdown in communication between LeBron and (Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh).“
- In another tweet, Wojnarowski also reports that unless Pat Riley lines up talent appealing to James within the Heat’s cap structure soon, “LeBron seems ready to explore [the] market.”
- Suns owner Robert Sarver was in Cleveland yesterday to meet with Paul, reports Chris Broussard of ESPN.com (Twitter link). The possibility of teaming up James with either Carmelo Anthony or Chris Bosh was discussed, notes Broussard.