June 30th, 2010
12:23 PM ET

Who has the lead in luring LeBron? Apparently everyone

The NBA season started in October and ended two weeks ago with the Los Angeles Lakers' stirring victory over the Boston Celtics in one of the most-watched championship series ever, but the most anticipated event on the league’s calendar gets under way at midnight Wednesday when several superstar free agents, led by LeBron James, can start to meet officially with any team that wants them, and a lot of teams want them.

James has only made one public comment about what he might do, telling CNN’s Larry King this month that the Cleveland Cavaliers, the team he’s played for the last seven years, has the edge in signing him but hasn't come close to committing. That's left plenty of room for speculation.

Stephen A. Smith of Fox Sports says James is going to sign with the Miami Heat, Jonathan Abrams of The New York Times quoted a league executive this weekend, who says the Chicago Bulls are the front-runners. Sports Illustrated’s Ian Thomsen has details of how the New York Knicks plan to woo him. And The Cleveland (Ohio) Plain Dealer's Brian Windhorst on Tuesday said the Cavaliers are still the front-runner.

In all, five of the NBA’s 15 all-league players from this season plus several other stars are free to change teams. The rules say nobody can sign a new contract until July 8, so expect a flood of speculation, stories and maybe even some scoops in the coming week.

For all the latest on James and the other NBA free agents follow the LeBron James Watch on SI.com.

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soundoff (127 Responses)
  1. Me

    Lakers!!!!! :0

    June 30, 2010 at 1:34 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • clevelando

      you must take the whole team.... and you can do his mother too

      June 30, 2010 at 2:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rita

      He can't go to the Lakers. He hasn't broken any laws.

      June 30, 2010 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • El

      Yes. And you gotta be a winner to play with the Lakers. He isn't.

      June 30, 2010 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Andy

    Lemme see.. I kill myself to make some good money each year.. and this guy makes what with endorsements... $50M or more.. ..

    I can barely afford the tickets to see a game.. never mind a game that counts.

    So LeBron can play in NY, BOS, Cleveland, or Jupiter for all that I care

    June 30, 2010 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Scott

      Well said ANDY...in the throws of BIG BUSINESS they have for got about us little fans.....

      June 30, 2010 at 1:54 pm | Report abuse |
  3. adam

    not sure how you can call lebron greedy or unloyal when he pays to have his highschool basketball team travel with him wherever he goes.

    he also has a pass first mentality and not a shoot first mentality like some stars like say kobe bryant have

    June 30, 2010 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • guest

      why the kobe hate after he just won the championship? 5 vs 0. now which would you rather have (and don't forget about bron quitting in the playoffs)?

      June 30, 2010 at 2:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • VBJr

      Kobe, WIN first mentality.

      June 30, 2010 at 3:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ichiro

      I agree with guest, LeBron is overrated. Michael Jordan never quit in the playoffs and neither did Kobe. LeBron doesn't have the killer instinct to destroy his opponent. He's talented as all get out and a marketing machine, no doubt. That's why everyone wants him. But in terms of basketball he's no different than say, Josh Smith or Gerald Wallace. Those two guys are extremely talented but lack the heart of a champion. LeBron is no different.

      June 30, 2010 at 3:21 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Cheech

    Who cares, basketball is ghetto.

    June 30, 2010 at 1:43 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • T.DOT

      Cheech your an idiot, you probably watch rugby.

      June 30, 2010 at 1:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Wormmwood

      Couldnt agree more.

      June 30, 2010 at 1:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Wormmwood

      Wasn't expecting someone to disagree. I meant I agree that "who cares, basketball is ghetto."

      June 30, 2010 at 1:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • Evan

      I agree. I stopped watching years ago, used to be a huge fan.

      June 30, 2010 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Evan

      I haven't watched basketball in years. The league is watered down and the players look and act like criminals. Used to be a huge fan, now I don't even know when begins or ends.

      June 30, 2010 at 1:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Cheech

      I heard that a rugby player brought two guns into the locker room to prove what a man he was. Oh no wait that was a ghetto NBA guy.

      June 30, 2010 at 2:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Daddy Warbux

      If the NBA is ghetto – what does that make Hockey? A bunch of neanderthals on skates fighting at every turn – yep, that happens on NBA courts all season long and I'm tired of it!! It's the most ghetto sport ever!! You guys are hilarious with your covertly racial comments. Why don't you just come out and say that because the NBA is 95% Black that, that's the reason you don't like it. Cowards!!!

      June 30, 2010 at 2:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • clevelando

      did you know 95% of NBA players have a criminal record, tell me its not ghetto

      June 30, 2010 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • moe smith

      it's not ghetto!!! It's the hopes and dreams of every urban culture child in america! And what is urban culture today? oh yea... it's nothing more than the failed education of our school system and shattered dreams of men like Malcom X and Martin Luther King Jr who wanted more for future generations and it's simply become less and less as today's "urban culture" can do nothing more than blame "the man" for what happened to their third and fourth gen ancestors and some how attribute what happened 100s of years ago to their "plight" today. - in other words... make fncking excuses and expect someone else to hand them everything they want... like a college education, housing, etc because they "deserve" it.

      LeBron has become as tiresome as Sarah Palin in today's media. Go back to your hood, James.

      June 30, 2010 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • Micle

      Totally agree, NBA sucks anymore, after Jordan, Barkley etc left, it's nothing more than a getto streetball sport. I prefer college Bball any time!!!!

      June 30, 2010 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • DA TROOF

      Daddy Warbux has a closet full of Michael Irvin suits.

      June 30, 2010 at 3:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • KevinS

      The NBA is ghetto because they bring guns into the locker room, they curse like crazy during the games, many of them have children by 7-10 different woman, they now have so many tattoos that you can barely see there arms anymore. Remember the brawl in the palace about 4 years ago? I still watch the NBA as well as college but that's because I love the game of ball. The players and stars of today don't hold a candle to the Jordan, Bird and Magic era. These guys are selfish and some have no loyalty or heart. I do think Lebron is justified in doing whatever he wants since leaving will only be for less money, then no one can call him selfish and if he leaves it will only be to win, which is actually admirable.

      June 30, 2010 at 3:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jeff S

      Micle, Its funny that you would use the phrase "Totally agree, NBA sucks anymore", then refer to something else as "ghetto." You need to work on your basic grammar skills. Using "anymore" in that context makes you sound more ghetto than anything I've ever heard come out of an NBA player's mouth.

      June 30, 2010 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • tengrela21

      the whole world including wall street is ghetto, stay with your hockey crap

      June 30, 2010 at 8:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Daddy Warbux

      @clevelando – My stats are correct – where are you getting your information? @ DA TROOF – I don't have any Michael Irvin suits, but I do have 10 inches of man meat in my pants and your father likes to watch me bang your moms while he whacks off!! You're an idiot!!

      June 30, 2010 at 10:22 pm | Report abuse |
  5. EDWARD THOMAS

    I thought the NBA folded 10 years ago.

    June 30, 2010 at 1:44 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Eddy

      I disagree. the NBA has been rising lately.

      June 30, 2010 at 1:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • moe smith

      it's like Herpes... it'll always be there...

      June 30, 2010 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Topher

    I am so sick of hearing about LeBron James!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    June 30, 2010 at 1:44 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Steve Brian

    http://www.englishtips-self-taught.blogspot.com

    June 30, 2010 at 1:47 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  8. doofus

    lol, you guys crack me up.

    June 30, 2010 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Jim McCoy

    What's with all these hipocrites that say they are so sick of hearing/reading about something... yet they care enough to go into that article & even take the time to leave a comment?

    June 30, 2010 at 1:57 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Eric

      Because we enjoy complaing and need to vent.

      June 30, 2010 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • moe smith

      lern too spehl

      June 30, 2010 at 2:47 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Eric

    I hope he goes somewhere fast because I'm sick of hearing about Lebron this Lebron that. EVery time I turn on ESPN to find basball scores it's always LEBRON IS THE BEST FRE AGENT EVERRRRRRRRRRRRRRR. We get it. He's good. Now wait patiently Thursday morning and THEN you can discuss the team he signed for.

    June 30, 2010 at 2:00 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  11. shf

    On the Lebron situation, if he wants to keep his legacy intact, he should stay in Cleveland. IMO, leaving now will make him look weak and no guratttess he will win a championship anywhere...and even if he did and by a dream team, only weakens his position.....If Cleveland can get one player to compliment his skills that should be enough...Look at Michael with Scottie, roles players beside thise 2.( John Paxton? ) .same in LA, Kobe and Gasol, (Derrick Fisher role players around him.. point is be loyal and stick it out..........

    June 30, 2010 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Matt

      Wel stated dan, couldn't agree more. Hopefully he doesnt listen to that Walker character, and listens more to his own instinct. Walker just wants to use LeBron to get even more in power. It's all just a power trip with these agents, and therefore the players as well.

      June 30, 2010 at 2:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Daddy Warbux

      I couldn't agree more your post. I've been saying ever since this thing started that he should stay in Cleveland and make it happen there. I don't doubt that he'd be successful on "any" team, but it's about carving your own niche and he can do that in Cleveland just as Jordan did with the Bulls. I'd rather see him stay where he is and build his empire there.

      June 30, 2010 at 2:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chris

      Agree. Well said. If Lebron makes it work in Cleveland he will ascend to the level of Jordan. If he bails for another team, his legacy will be overshadowed by city, the team, the coach or the players who lured him there. Lebron will be the hired gun instead of the heart and soul of the team and its city. No emotions here:)

      June 30, 2010 at 2:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • KevinS

      I agree with you shf. Staying with the Cavs would be best. However, I don't think they have the salary cap space to improve this team for next year or possibly another couple of years to come. I think the trade for Jamison is what they thought would put them over the top BUT LeBron disappeared or gave up during the playoffs and that sealed the Cav's fate. He must be a machine (like Jordan was) for the team to advance and win a championship.

      June 30, 2010 at 3:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • shf

      Kevin S...good points about Jamieson, cap issues and Lebrons play in the playoffs and during crunch time (when he needed to step up, he went dark)...you think Jordan or Bird would have been holding theirs elbows, grimacing for 40 minutes and.shooting left handed at the line....never show your weakness...Jordan was an assassian., so was Bird, Thomas...hate to say but Kobe is in this category...Lebron needs to go to assasian school over the summer...there must be some mental block of some kind, he needs to take over games in the 4th........Never a big fan of Jamieson, not the wingman Lebron needs, but at least they tried...we need to remember the Bulls were terrible in Jordans first 5 /6 seasons and changed with maturity and when Pippen and Phil Jackson arrived . Not an expert on the cap room but offload some of those guys (guys that don't fit, and hard to watch), .....get a new coach that Lebron actually believes in... ....and rebuild, it may take a few years but he's still better off showing his loyalty and doing it his way...he's stilll young, not in the twilight, so don't act like it......at the end of his career,, he can say I gave it my all and the team that first gave me the chance. If he falls short i still respect his decision..getting a manufactured championship by joining a loaded team is weak (and will always put a caveat *asterick next to it)....my advice, be loyal, work hard, and get it done Lebron in Cleveland.....

      June 30, 2010 at 6:16 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Bob from accounting

    Thank goodness for the MLB Network, otherwise i wouldn't stop hearing about this Free Agent BS thats been going on for years.

    June 30, 2010 at 2:04 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  13. dan beck

    I guess sports reporters are not held to the same standard as "real" journalist. These guys are making it up as the go along. What ever happened to having at least two sources to verify a story? "All three met in Miami", one day, the next day only one player was in Miami...I swear, my dog could do better reporting.

    June 30, 2010 at 2:08 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • VBJr

      lol... your right

      June 30, 2010 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Frank H. Condington

    Does LeBron drive a LeCar to watch the race at LeMans with Pepé LePew??

    June 30, 2010 at 2:12 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • micheal vick

      F lebran. F tiger F my little brotha. we all are thugs abd dont care about the game. just women and tattoos and money

      June 30, 2010 at 2:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • john

      PERFECT!!!!!!!

      June 30, 2010 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • clevelando

      u dog

      June 30, 2010 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rita

      You put the things they care about in order from least to most important, right?

      June 30, 2010 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
  15. the truth

    golf sux and tiger is wayyyyyyy yyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy over paid!!!!!!!!!!! and by the way golf is a game not a sport ....anything a 14 girl and a 60 year old man and a fat drunk man can play at the same time against each other!!!!!! thats
    a gm!!!!!!

    June 30, 2010 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse | Reply
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