Where will LeBron James play next season is the question on most NBA fans’ mind as the regular season draws to a close. But who do we blame? Is it the fans, media or LeBron himself? James keeps giving these cryptic messages about his future and has everyone guessing his next move. Well, according to Nate Mann of Rip City Project, LeBron James is a huge fan of Damian Lillard and the Portland Trail Blazers.
LeBron, when asked about Lillard and the Blazers had the following to say to the Portland media.
“That guy’s a superstar in our league and he’s showing it right now. He’s leading the team obviously where I don’t think a lot of people thought they’d be at the beginning of the season. But him as the leader of the team he has them in position to fight in the West.”
It’s been rumored that James has narrowed his choices down to the Houston Rockets, Philadelphia 76ers, Cleveland Cavaliers, and San Antonio Spurs. Could the Blazers be the fifth team LeBron is interested in joining? That might be the case now after LeBron made this statement about Lillard where he feels the Blazers’ guard is not getting enough recognition for his leadership. “Give me Damian Lillard, I’ll show you how appreciated he’ll be.”
That sure sounds like LeBron would love to team up with Lillard. But the issue with that, especially for Cavaliers’ fans is that the Cavaliers cannot afford Lillard and there’s no way the Blazers are going to trade their star player. All that leaves is LeBron coming to Portland to team with Lillard and C.J. McCollum.
Since the franchise was handed to Lillard and McCollum, the Blazers have been in search of a small forward who can take the pressure off the Blazers’ dynamic backcourt. Adding LeBron would give the Blazers the best lineups in the NBA, far better than what the Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets can throw out. With LeBron, McCollum, Lillard, and Jusuf Nurkic, the Blazers would easily become the favorites to with a championship.
This has to be something Neil Olshey is seriously considering. To get a deal like this done, the Blazers will have to be smart in terms of money. With LeBron and Nurkic set to become free agents this year, the Blazers will need to find a way to pay both, but not shatter their cap in the process.
While LeBron may have just been messing around with the Portland media, the truth is, a deal can be done. LeBron teaming with Lillard is a real possibility no one thought of until the Blazers went on their incredible run the second-half of the season. The league has taken notice, the fans sure have, and now they have managed to catch the attention of LeBron James. Never say never.