With LeBron James having reportedly opted out of the final year of his contract with the Cleveland Cavaliers, he is now an unrestricted free agent, and preparing to make yet another big decision, much like the one he made in 2010 when he left the Cavaliers to sign with the Miami Heat. And while most NBA free agency rumors are suggesting that the Los Angeles Lakers are the favorites to sign James, it appears that one of the Philadelphia 76ers’ top stars is making a pitch of his own, in hopes of luring LeBron to the City of Brotherly Love.
According to Fox Sports Australia, the recruiting pitch was made by 2017-18 NBA Rookie of the Year Ben Simmons, who shared an Instagram story earlier on Friday that featured a photo of himself and James sharing the same court, with the caption “KJ X FP” above the image. Fox Sports Australia explained that the caption refers to both superstars’ nicknames, as “KJ” stands for “King James” and “FP” for Simmons’ moniker, “Fresh Prince.” Both players are friends with each other, and, as further noted, are both represented by sports agent Rich Paul.
This isn’t the first time that Ben Simmons has hinted at wanting LeBron James to play for the Philadelphia 76ers, as he told Fox Sports Australia in January that it would be “fun” if he got to play alongside his longtime mentor. Simmons was often compared to James while playing for Louisiana State University, and while both players now have different pro positions, with the former being used as the Sixers’ starting point guard and the latter lining up at both forward spots, the Australian youngster put up strong all-around numbers as a rookie, much like James did in his first year in the NBA.
“I’d love to play with him. I think that’d be a lot of fun, just because we both have different games, and unique games. Whatever happens, happens, but whoever I’m playing against, I wanna go at.”
Meanwhile, it remains far from sure whether LeBron James will sign with the Philadelphia 76ers or Los Angeles Lakers, or possibly remain with the Cleveland Cavaliers. However, Deadspin cited ESPN’s Brian Windhorst, who reported that James is getting ready for his big announcement by shacking up in a so-called “Decision Cave” — a place in the Caribbean where he, his close friends, and some of his advisers are supposedly gathering as they help him make the right decision in free agency.