LeBron James has built a rivalry with the Golden State Warriors over the past three years as they have faced each other in the finals year during this time period. No one ever considered James joining them this offseason when his contract is up, but now he is saying he could consider them if they gave him a max offer.
According to ESPN’s Chris Haynes, James could opt out of his contract to join what is already considered one of the greatest teams of all time with Kevin Durant, Steph Curry, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson.
Of course, if this were to fall into place, the Warriors would have to move one of their stars and it would likely be Thompson. Nonetheless, here is what Haynes has to say about the situation:
If the Golden State Warriors can create a max salary slot this offseason, the defending NBA champions could position themselves to secure a meeting with LeBron James, league sources told ESPN.
There is no indication that Golden State is evaluating such options to acquire the Cavaliers star at this time.
Out of respect for the Warriors’ winning culture, James would listen if Golden State explored ways to clear the necessary cap space, sources said.
… James’ distant relationship with Cavs owner Dan Gilbert is well-chronicled and the instability in the front office has been of concern to him, but the Warriors’ strong organizational structure and the prospect of more championships would be an enticement that most veteran players would consider.
James and his business team have been known to covet structure if he were to leave his hometown team. With Golden State, an ultra-aggressive general manager in Bob Myers, the ownership group as a whole and coach Steve Kerr are the epitome of that.
In order for this to happen, the Warriors would have to dump Shaun Livingston’s contract and make Durant take less money than he is taking currently. It would also be a sign and trade deal where James would sign with the Cavalier and then get traded to the Warriors in exchange for Thompson Andre Iguodala and any other potential assets.