Storyline: LeBron James Trade?

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5 months ago via ESPN

Following yet another disheartening loss by the Cleveland Cavaliers, 116-98 to an Orlando Magic team tied for the worst record in the Eastern Conference, LeBron James said he will not waive his no-trade clause ahead of Thursday’s 3 p.m. ET trade deadline. “I’m here for the long haul,” James said. “I’m here for this season right now, [to] try to figure out ways we can still compete. I couldn’t give up on my teammates like that. I couldn’t do that. I just couldn’t do it. We put too much into the game every single day. We go out and prepare. Win, lose or draw, at the end of the day, we’re all brothers, and we understand that. I owe it to my teammates to finish this season out no matter how it ends up. I would never waive my no-trade clause.”

Cleveland has attempted to behave as a buyer at the trade deadline, but the first approach toward a possible rebuild would be to examine trading the team’s core players — a conversation the Cavaliers have yet to broach with James, and both sides understand his position to play the season out, league sources said. Over the past several days, teams around the league have openly wondered about whether Cleveland would look into James dropping his no-trade — which would clear the way for a potential pursuit. However, James remains solely focused on competing for a championship in Cleveland this season and evaluating his future after the season ends.

LeBron James may or may not be “100 percent” certain to leave Cleveland after this season, but the Cavaliers are reportedly already preparing for life without the King. According to Kevin Durant, James has more than earned the right to dictate the terms of any possible departure. Durant was replying to a tweet Wednesday from rapper Lil Dicky, who said, “If I’m Cleveland, I’m one thousand percent trading LeBron.” James actually has a no-trade clause in his contract, which also gives him the ability to opt out in 2018, but the Warriors forward took the tweet at face value, saying that the Cavs “can’t trade a legend.” “He is Cleveland, he gets to hold the cards,” Durant added.
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June 23, 2018 | 10:12 pm EDT Update
The Suns will be busy before July 1. Expect them to renounce their rights to center Alex Len and point guard Elfrid Payton, making them both free agents. Ayton’s addition has made Len expendable, and while Phoenix still needs point-guard help, Payton’s inconsistent play last season and, more importantly, his $10 million cap hold figure, likely means he’s played his last game in a Suns uniform. Letting Len and Payton walk will put Phoenix approximately $10 million under the cap.
Storyline: Alex Len Free Agency
If another club gives the former Vanderbilt star an offer for the regular minimum contract for a second-year player ($1.2M), there could be a chance the Knicks don’t match it, pending Robinson’s summer-league performance. According to a source, there will be a handful of clubs with a passing interest. The stickiest part is Kornet, a new-age outside-shooting 3-point shooter who played 20 games, may not play Knicks summer league because of the uncertainty.
Brett Brown, interim 76ers general manager, apparently doesn’t believe in hitting singles. He’s all about swinging for the fences. Brown isn’t hoping to add a role player to help the team he coaches — he’s looking for a difference-maker to get the Sixers from 52 wins a year ago to a championship contender. He made that clear Thursday night during and after the NBA Draft, and again during Friday’s news conference introducing first-round picks Zhaire Smith and Landry Shamet. “The whole notion of star hunting, star chasing, star development is at the forefront of everything we do,” Brown said. “I would just like to go there to admit it to all of us. The timeline is now.”