The “Summer of LeBron” is upon us, and everyone and their mamas have opinions on where he should take his talents next season.
A lot of cats think he should sign with the Houston Rockets. Many more think he will be a Los Angeles Laker. The Sixers look tantalizing. A vocal few think he should keep his ass in Cleveland.
While all of those options do have their good points, if I were LeBron, I would not go to ANY of those squads.
The Rockets would have to essentially hit their team to sign LeBron, especially since Chris Paul is seeking the max and James Harden being currently paid the super max. No Clint Capella would be bad news for Houston.
Meanwhile, while the Lakers do have good young pieces in Kyle Kuzma and Lonzo Ball, I still don’t think LeBron makes them better than Golden State. Even if another star such as Paul George joins him, it still doesn’t get L.A. over the hump.
While Philly does have two future superstars in Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons (along with a ton of shooters), LeBron and Simmons are essentially the same type of player. One of them would have to be able to move without the ball, and I don’t know if that’s either player’s strong suit.
As for the Cavaliers, seriously?
This why if LeBron is serious about his legacy and chase rings, I think he should consider the following two squads, even though they are not talked about as much: the San Antonio Spurs and Boston Celtics.
Both squads give LeBron something he’s never been blessed with in his illustrious career: a great coach. If you look at the great teams of recent past – the “Showtime” Lakers of the 80s, the Larry Bird-led Celtics of the 80s, Isiah Thomas’ Pistons, the Chicago Bulls, Shaq and Kobe’s Lakers, And even Tim Duncan’s Spurs – those squads were led by all-time coaching greats.
While Boston’s Brad Stevens is now considered one of the great young coaches in the NBA, Gregg Popovich is the still the O.G. of NBA coaches. Pop is one of the few coaches who LeBron respects and admires.
Could you imagine a squad that has Kawhi Leonard, Lamarcus Aldridge AND LeBron – and still coaches by Pop? Add in the productive role players on the team and this team not will challenge Golden State, it could beat them in a playoff series. Remember that the Spurs were blowing out the Warriors in Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals last year before Leonard got cheap-shotted.
There’s a lot to like about the Celtics as well. As mentioned earlier, they have a great coach in Stevens. They also have young players – a rookie and two second year players, mind you – who have stardom written all over them. Hell, Jayson Tatum had the unmitigated gall/balls to posterize LeBron in a playoff game – a Game 7, no less!
Plus Boston has some dudes who have that dog in them. Guys like Marcus Smart, aka “MAHHHHHCUS SMAHHHHHT”, Marcus Morris and their O.G. Al Horford.
And I haven’t even mentioned Gordon Hayward and Kyrie Irving. Speaking of Irving, don’t think that general manager Danny Ainge would have a problem with moving Irving’s expiring contract elsewhere to make room for LeBron.
Here’s one thing that may give Boston an edge: LeBron would get to stay in the Eastern Conference. We all know the East is the JV to the West. Plus LeBron has owned the East the last eight seasons.
Having said that, San Antonio gives LeBron the best chance to keep collecting championships. Anywhere would be more about brand building and people pleasing than about winning.