Tuesday, 19 June, 2018


Could LeBron James Wind Up In Boston This Summer?

Getty Image Getty Image
Noah Ferguson | 12 June, 2018, 18:35

I know he had a great year, but you know there are people in Cleveland that will tell you that the Knicks should be considered a real threat for Kyrie Irving.

No one was more shocked than the Cleveland Cavaliers when star guard Kyrie Irving requested for a trade last summer.

With all the hub-bub regarding this year's National Basketball Association free-agency, it's no surprise that Kyrie Irving has found himself in the mix of the rumors and speculation.

Irving, who by training camp is expected to be fully recovered from the offseason knee procedure that kept him out of the playoffs, said he's excited to finally get to play with Gordon Hayward, who should be back from his ankle injury. The Celtics are long shots to sign James, but Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald reports the C's could be anxious about the impact even talking to James would have on Irving, his former Cleveland Cavaliers teammate.

It's understandable, with the quote coming just a week after Yahoo Sports' Chris Mannix reported that the Celtics are scared that Irving could bolt for the New York Knicks when he hits free agency next summer (as laughable as that is, Irving has been connected to the Knicks in the past). He was the face of the franchise.

"I told him I would love to play with a big like you, man, when we played them in the beginning of the season when he came to Boston, " Irving said during the media session after practice on Saturday.

There is no easy decision here, as all three plan to anchor the most loaded roster Boston has had to begin a season since 2007-08 with Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown flocking them. This season he averaged 14.5 points, 4.9 rebounds, 1.6 assists and 1.0 steals per game.

Since Horford's contract is too hefty for a player you can't build around if you wish to get past the second round of the playoffs, Hayward would probably be the sought after commodity for Cavaliers general manager Koby Altman. Rozier can't be Irving's one-for-one replacement.

The good takeaway from that reply is that Irving has his sights set on competing for a title with the Celtics next year. He is the priciest of the three, commanding 29 percent of the Celtics salary cap this year with a figure of $31.2 million.

As for the draft, the Celtics have 27th pick and should be able to find a solid bench player at that point.

However, Ainge would have to understand the risks of this move, especially when offering a package including Hayward. Plus, Rozier and Morris were crucial leaders on a team that reached Game 7 of the conference finals this season, and trading for James would involve passing on a full year of their services as well.

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