The Cleveland Cavaliers have had an eventful summer. It culminated in a trade of star point guard Kyrie Irving but there’s been speculation that the deals may not be over.
The Cavs received Isaiah Thomas and Jae Crowder as key components to be plugged into a three-time Finalist team. They also received a first-round pick originally belonging to the Brooklyn Nets, a strong asset for a rebuilding team.
There has been speculation that the Cavs would attempt to swap the pick for a proven talent in order to maximize their chances of beating the Warriors in the Finals.
According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, however, the Cavs are not looking to do that for one specific reason: uncertainty about LeBron James’ future.
“The question it seems like some people are asking now is ‘Should the Cavaliers flip that Nets pick to use it to get an impact player who can help them win this year, keep LeBron.’ It is not happening. That is not why they traded for that pick. They would have done it before the Kyrie trade, the fact that they don’t have a commitment from LeBron, the fact that within the organization, there’s real significant doubt about whether he’s going to return impacted the kind of deal they were looking to do. They felt like Boston was the only team that could satisfy a perfect world for them which was long term with the draft pick and then [Jae] Crowder and Isaiah [Thomas] shorter.”
There have been plenty of whispers that James may be leaving Cleveland as a free agent in 2018 with strong indications that he may look to move to the Lakers. There’s no telling what LeBron’s actual intentions are but it’s clear that the Cavs are preparing for a future without him, one that would include another long rebuild.