LeBron James has until June 29 to decide to pick up his contract option for the 2018-19 season with the Cleveland Cavaliers.
If James declines the option, which many expect he will, the 33-year-old star will become an unrestricted free agent July 1. While NBA teams are under a directive to not tamper with potential free agents, that doesn’t mean James isn’t making a few phone calls.
Mark Hesler of the Orange Country Register reported Saturday that King James has been trying to see who is willing to join him either in Cleveland or on a new team.
“LeBron is doing what we does — calling players on other teams he wants to play with,” an Eastern Conference general manager told Hesler.
Rumors have swirled about James potentially joining the Los Angeles Lakers since last offseason and it’s no secret that Paul George also desires to play in his hometown.
Chris Paul, one of James’ best friends, also is slated to be a free agent, and there reportedly has been “tension” with the Houston Rockets. There’s also the possibility that James has been contacting San Antonio Spurs star Kawhi Leonard, who reportedly has asked to be traded and wants to be a Laker.
The Spurs reportedly shut the Lakers down when they called about Leonard, but if Leonard continues to demand a trade, then LA could offer San Antonio a package centering around Lonzo Ball, Kyle Kuzma and future draft picks.
All signs point to James opting out of his contract and testing the market. Whether he lands in LA, Philadelphia or back in Cleveland, a number of veterans surely will want to join forces to try and capture an NBA championship.
Thumbnail photo via Ken Blaze/USA TODAY Sports Images