With the NBA Finals over, let’s talk LeBron James and the Spurs
By Rob Wolkenbrod
The NBA Finals are over and it starts an important offseason for the San Antonio Spurs. However, LeBron James might take over the summer.
The San Antonio Spurs sat idle as the Golden State Warriors, who beat them in the first round of the playoffs, swept the Cleveland Cavaliers to win the 2018 NBA Finals. It’s Golden State’s third championship in four years, and it was done in a route at the Quicken Loans Arena.
Win or lose, LeBron James’s future was always set to become a talking point after the Finals. Will he leave Cleveland? If so, who targets him in free agency? Would he actually opt into his contract for the 2018-19 season and stay with the team that drafted him in 2003?
James’s suitors will stretch from Eastern Conference teams, including the Philadelphia 76ers, to the Western Conference, with the Los Angeles Lakers and Houston Rockets as candidates. There’s also the Spurs, who received some support for this partnership to happen.
It’s a complicated process for the Silver and Black to contend for James’s talents. Any team would want him, but for potentially $35 million (nearly the max salary for a player with over 10 years of experience) it means a roster reconstruction for an organization that rarely, if ever, does this for a star player.
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A James-Kawhi Leonard combination would be a dream scenario for some Spurs fans. Two big wings that are among the best scorers and defenders in the NBA (when healthy) and can make the difference between winning and losing the championship.
However, if the Spurs and Leonard can’t settle their differences in this reported meeting that’s on the way, it takes away the key member of supporting talent for James. There’s still LaMarcus Aldridge, who dazzled in a revitalized campaign, but would that be enough, especially with a roster full of questions?
Something that points this in the right direction? Dejounte Murray’s relationship with James.
Murray was seen at Game 3 of the NBA Finals, with a seat behind Cleveland’s bench. It might not mean anything towards what happens this offseason, but these two players have developed a bond over the past two years, as MySanAntonio.com noted.
Here is the video clip of Dejounte Murray at the #Cavs Vs #Warriors game three sitting behind the Cavs bench. Hope Dejounte is trying to recruit LeBron to SA especially after tonights game. pic.twitter.com/ieDUYhMqJa
— Joe Garcia (@twoshotspodcast) June 7, 2018
Would Murray have enough pull to get James to San Antonio? Maybe not him alone, but the allure of Leonard (if he stays), head coach Gregg Popovich, and this organization’s consistent winning culture can’t hurt, either.
Next: 2018 NBA Mock Draft: After the lottery
Wherever James goes this offseason, it will rank among the top offseason topics, along with Leonard’s future with the Spurs. It should make for interesting theater as the rumor mill goes in full swing.