The signs connecting LeBron James’ upcoming free agency to the Los Angeles Clippers keep coming, this time from Yahoo! Sports writer Adrian Wojnarowski, who claims James finds a sign-and-trade to LA ‘intriguing’.
The most intriguing move on the mind of James and his camp, sources told Yahoo Sports, would be a sign-and-trade scenario with the Los Angeles Clippers in which James could play with close friend Chris Paul and under president-coach Doc Rivers. Nevertheless, Miami has remained the primary consideration for James, sources said. He wants to see Riley’s plans for improving the roster.
With cap situations being a bit complicated thanks to cap holds and things of that nature, there are only two ways LeBron finds himself dawning red, white, and blue next season. One would be to clear the multiple salaries that are clogging up the cap space (Crawford, Dudley, Green), renounce soon-to-be free agents in Darren Collison, Danny Granger, and Glen “Big Baby” Davis, and find a taker for DeAndre Jordan. The second way would be trading Blake Griffin for James straight up.
Interestingly enough, Woj pointed out within his article that Pat Riley would not be in favor of helping LeBron James through a sign-and-trade which seems a bit short-sighted as the Heat would put themselves in the position to miss out of a marquee asset in Blake Griffin or DeAndre Jordan that could be the center of a future rebuild.
While the appeal of LeBron James is enough to make one want to gut their entire roster in hopes of attaining him, you have to think the Clippers aren’t as appealing if Blake Griffin isn’t playing aside him. In the Western Conference, just Chris Paul and James wouldn’t be enough. We’ve seen the Oklahoma City Thunder struggle with their two superstars, and despite Doc Rivers being a far superior head coach than Scott Brooks, the same could apply to the Clippers plus James, Paul, sans Griffin.
The signs continue to point to mutual interest between the two parties. There’s no guarantee he’s not the roster come November, but Clipprs fans are presented the opportunity to say there’s a chance and it actually mean something.