The name LeBron James will dominate another summer.
In the summer of 2010, James went on ESPN and made a decision that made Cleveland angry, and Miami happy.
Four years later, in 2014, James made another decision, via Sports Illustrated, and this time, he went back home to Cleveland.
Fast forward to 2018; James is expected to opt out of his contract and become an unrestricted free agent, which will lead to another decision.
Hall of Famer Isiah Thomas, who been around the NBA for a long time as player, coach, and executive, has never seen a player, on the level of James, have to make a such a big decision:
“I think where we are in sports, in basketball, particularly with him, he’s shattering all the of historical norms,” Thomas recently told the Go4it podcast. “I don’t know if we ever had a player with this much success at this stage of his life with this kind of decision to make. I can’t recall another NBA player, in my lifetime, that’s been at this point where they gotta make a decision. And it’s like every time he steps up to the plate because he’s been so great, it’s a new thing that we’re looking at, so that isn’t a typical free agent like he was six, seven years ago. This is a totally different stratosphere that he is in right now.”
James, 33, has a lot to think about regarding his next team. He has to figure out what is the best situation for his family, and he has to figure what is the best location for him to win another NBA title, which makes this decision very complicated, according to Thomas:
“I don’t even know where he goes to get advice to be honest with you,” Thomas explained. “Can Cleveland put together a basketball team; can management put together a team that he can compete with? I don’t know, but losing Kyrie(Irving), not having Isaiah(Thomas), and everything that came back; even though he got to the Finals with it, we know that it’s not good enough to beat Golden State or even Boston or Philadelphia(moving forward).”
At this point, on paper, it does not seem Cleveland will not have enough to beat Boston, who is expected to get Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward back next season. Also, with the 76ers having two franchise-caliber players in Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid, they might be a difficult team to beat moving forward, too.
Whatever decision LeBron makes, everybody will be talking about it all summer long!
Listen below as Thomas talks LeBron’s free agency at the 29:33 mark