Cavaliers Notes: LeBron, Lue, Irving

Major changes are coming to the Cavaliers this summer regardless of what LeBron James decides, writes Terry Pluto of Cleveland.com. Pluto observes that James is fatigued from carrying such a heavy load all season, much as he was at the end of his tenure in Miami, and will seriously consider leaving the organization for the first time since he returned four years ago.

Pluto expects James to opt out of his $35.6MM salary for next season by the June 29 deadline, even if he decides to remain with the Cavs. Whether or not James stays on, Pluto foresees a major roster shakeup as the front office tries to rebuild a team that has accumulated too many old players.
There’s more this morning out of Cleveland:
  • After the Finals ended Friday, Tyronn Lue said he intends to return as coach next season, but Pluto isn’t convinced that will happen. Pluto notes that Lue looked as tired at the end of the year as he did when he took a medical leave of absence in mid-March. Lue, who was diagnosed with anxiety, a rapid heartbeat and sleep deprivation, missed three weeks before returning late in the season. Pluto contends that Lue hasn’t been as quick with his decisions this year — citing the failure to call time out at the end of Game 1 as an example — and speculates that he may part ways with the Cavs and take a year off to recover.
  • James has dropped a lot of hints that he is planning to leave Cleveland again, writes Howard Beck of Bleacher Report. After leading an undermanned roster to the Finals and turning in an MVP-level season at age 33, James has expressed a desire to play alongside more capable and basketball-savvy teammates. “I made the move in 2010 to be able to play with talented players, cerebral players that could see things that happen before they happened on the floor,” James said. “And your teammate can do the same throughout the course of a season, throughout the course of a game, throughout the course of a playoffs, throughout the course of a Finals. So when you feel like you’re really good at your craft, I think it’s always great to be able to be around other great minds, as well, and other great ballplayers.”
  • Kyrie Irving did the same thing to James that LeBron did to Dwyane Wade in Miami, contends Ira Winderman of The Sun-Sentinel. After a string of Finals appearances, James left the Heat in 2014 to have the spotlight to himself in Cleveland, just as Irving expressed a desire to do when he asked for a trade last summer. Winderman also notes that the Heat had free agent meetings with James in both 2010 and 2014, so it’s reasonable to assume they could be on his list again.
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33 thoughts on “Cavaliers Notes: LeBron, Lue, Irving

  1. brady234

    He didn’t leave the heat in 10 he left the Cavs. What an idiot.

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  2. brady234

    Lebron will leave and join the lakers or rockets. He will come back and retire in Cleveland with his son.

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    • pihc

      For james to leave for the Lakers. the Lakers would have to dump the entire roster to get P George and possibly a low tier all star, then hope they can grab up what remains from the Cleveland team. And that would make Big Baller Boys upset.

      I don’t think the Rockets are going to blow up their roster to have 3 super stars that make max bucks only to once again hope for aging players at the minimum.

      At this point, the only realistic two teams that could swing James due to cap space are the Lakers and Philly. Danny Ainge is creative enough that he might be able to trade half his team to get James, but then again is it worth the Celtics to dump promising role players and an allstar or two just to obtain an aging superstar that demands the ball and a say in how the team is put together. I’m not sure that would go well there.

      The best place for him is in Cleveland.

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      • antsmith7

        Why would the Lakers need to dump the entire roster? They only have to move a couple players to have room for two max salary slots. What are you talking about?

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        • moazetongue

          The lakers would have to dump that roster bc there is absolutely no talent there at all. Doesn’t doesn’t win ships with rookies and sophomores and a over zealous daddy of one of the players. Why would James go to play LA when here’s no talent?

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      • joemoes

        The lakers have enough roster space right now for two max players to sign out right.
        Danny Ainge wouldn’t have to dump half his roster they just have to dump Horford which you do every time for Lebron.

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        • moazetongue

          Boston can take on 50 mil per year for James? And how is that going to go over with Irving who left Cleveland so he could “have his own team”. Is the Celtic coach going to go along with “just give me the ball” ISO? Will Ainge go along with janes demanding what players to get in FA? They’d have to dump players to bring along James’ friends. Although I’m sure there are still Boston fans that are clamoring for a Kendrick Perkins return to go along with Korver et al.

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  3. knickscavsfan

    I seriously doubt LBJ left Miami because he no longer wanted to share the spotlight. He was clearly the best and most powerful player in the nba when he came to Miami. He left because he felt the team ownership wasn’t willing to max out payroll to retain certain players like Mike Miller for example.

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  4. joemoes

    And He had unfinished business. Lebron has nothing to be ashamed of. He’s taken Cleveland to 5 finals. 3 times the rosters he carried. He led the cavs to be the 2nd most successful franchise the last 4 years.

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  5. bobaganoosh5

    Boston is a serious contender for him especially if he wants to win…. Celtics give him a better opportunity to beat warriors than the rockets … especially since Celtics have sooo many assets to keep talent coming for years and to build a dynasty …. rockets are aging and aging quick without the lack of assets…. it’s coming down to Celtics or Philly….. he wants to win and lakers don’t provide that nor do heat or Cavs ….. all this being said I’m not a lebron fan and a huge Celtics fan….. this rumor makes a ton of sense especially since Kyrie won’t commit to Celtics after 2019…..

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    • brewcrew08

      who does Boston dump to clear 33M for LeBron though? horford, Irving and Hayward are all making big money next season. Not to mention Morris isn’t cheap either

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      • joemoes

        Horford.
        I’ve been saying Boston is the best spot for Lebron. I think they should trade Kyrie for Chris Paul. And then trade horford and their 1st round next year not the Kings pick the late first round to Cleveland for Lebron.
        Chris Paul, Lebron, Tatum, Hayward, Brown, Rozier, Kings pick 2019, they can pick up a big man anywhere for cheap hell bring back Monroe.

        Philly makes sense too but they should go after Kawhi Leonard or Paul George also. Trade fultz Covington and a late first for
        Kawahi after you sign Lebron.

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      • Dodgethis

        Anyone starting to think kyrie and James planned this to both play for the Celtics?

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  6. chiefivey

    im coming out of left field w. this… but i think lebron should go to the knicks. i feel that way because he doesnt need to go to a team that is already established, he can go to a team that can put the right players around him. i know the knicks cap situation is bleek right now, but they definitely have a capable front office to make the moves and clear alot of space. Also, if lebron were to win in NY he would no doubt go down as a legend and i personally feel as if going to NY or any team that isnt already prebuilt is the only way i would respect his decision to leave cleveland and “chase championships”

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    • Dodgethis

      People always suggest a team will happily take bloated contracts so that a different team can sign an all star. Who is this mystery team with gobs of cap space that is willing to buy draft picks?

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  7. Dionis

    This narrative that this dude had to carry such a heavy load is a bunch of garbage. The man can’t be coached period and can’t play in a system that is why the team failed. Iverson took a worse team to the Finals and at least won 1 game against he Kobe-Shaq Lakers. Lebron couldn’t even win one game that’s pathetic.

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    • knickscavsfan

      You are such a hater that you easily are dismissive of facts. When you either score or assist the majority of your team’s load and you routinely lead them in games, minutes, points, assists and sometimes rebound proves the point

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      • Dionis

        You are proving my point, he doesn’t have to score the majority of points and get a majority of the assists if he would let his teammates get involved.

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  8. bknowledge

    Boston has 3 high paid players (Hayward, Horford, and Kyrie); they’ll have to include 1 of those guys in any trade for Lebron to make the salaries work. A trade of Kyrie to Cleveland for Lebron would be an amusing irony for me but I can’t see Cleveland doing it no way no how. Horford is too central to Boston’s success; he’s irreplaceable to that team; Boston won’t trade him. So its down to Hayward. If Lebron’s gonna walk, Hayward is a solid asset to get back. I can see Cleveland definitely saying yes. The trade is simple because their salaries match. But, if Lebron goes to Boston will it make Kyrie a definite to leave after next year? And is Boston’s coach willing to get rid of his star college player? But add Lebron and Kyrie to this year’s Celtics and Golden State is no longer a championship lock.

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    • joemoes

      Cleveland doesn’t want Hayward back in a trade he will just be unhappy. Horford is very much replaceable.

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      • bknowledge

        My argument that Horford is irreplaceable is thus: He’s a 5 time all star. In the playoffs, he led the Celtics in fg percentage, rebounding and blocked shots. He was in the top 3 in pretty much every other category. He’s known as the best front court defender on the Celtics. Morris or Monroe or Baynes don’t have his skill set (combined they’ve gone to zero all star games). I also think Lebron, Hayward, Brown, and Tatum can all play sf so the sf position is more expendable in a trade. Horford won’t be any happier in Cleveland than Hayward. I think the Cavs would prefer Hayward given their ages at the start of next season (28 versus 32).

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  9. Can anyone be blamed for the roster construction but Lebron since he was forcing the team’s hand to sign people to bloated contract or he will leave? While the Cleveland front office may have been weak, lebron’s name put butts in the seat and that is what the team and league want. They gave in to his demands and Lebron had to carry them then he is going to drop the team like a bad habit again and make another team do the same.

    He will not go west because it would be too much competition and lets be honest you have one all star on your team and even mediocre players on your team your pretty much makes the final 4 in the east although after this year it is more promising with the celtics and sixers picks finally hitting.

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  10. canajay12

    I don’t know the exact cap situating in LaLa land but Ball, Lebron, Randle, Kuzma and Ingram is immediately better than this Cleveland roster. I understand they’d have enough room to add a couple other pieces as well or ditch one of the above to make room for PGeorge or even more scary, Boogie Cousins.

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  11. Z-A

    Basically Cleveland would have to find takers for Hill, TT, JR, and Clarkson without taking back contracts. Trading one of them + 8 for a legit player would be 1 way to improve the roster, clearing the contracts to sign someone is a more difficult task.

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    • x%sure

      I can picture Clarkson going for Vucovic, if Orlando picks a 5 instead of a 1. Altman should be on the phone encouraging that.

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  12. Dodgethis

    So Durant takes heat for joining a well run/good team, but no heat for LeBron for basically calling his teammates garbage and a desire to play with better players? It’s the exact same thing.

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  13. azcrook

    The Warriors are still going to be the dominant team for another few years no matter where Lebron goes……too strong and too deep….

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  14. Horford is right now without a doubt the best player in Boston, I would much happily get rid of Kyrie or Hayward.
    All I can say is that I can see a wind from the east coming, & is gonna blow those warriors from the Golden State, & that wind is called Philly… Embiid is unmatchable for Golden State in a year or two with more experience in the back of Simmons & Embiid, & whatever improvements in Fultz, Dario & #10 pick of this year & any possible FA, this Sixers looking to good to me, I think Embiid might well be the next King of the NBA make no mistake about it.

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    • moazetongue

      To be the king you can’t take massive days off and miss entire seasons.

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