Cavs to pitch LeBron James with humor, familiarity, and Chris Bosh

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The New York Knicks pitched a billion dollars.

The Miami Heat pitched championship rings and the value of sacrifice.

The New Jersey Nets pitched a media empire.

The Los Angeles Clippers pitched… (giggle)… Baron Davis and Chris Kaman.

So what are the Cleveland Cavaliers, the home team, the favorites in many’s eyes to retain the service of LeBron James, going to pitch the King?

Yucks and laughs, my friends Yucks and laughs.

Brian Windhorst (unsurprisingly) is all over the case, outlining how the meeting will likely go. The Cavs are planning to rely on their long-term knowledge of LeBron, appeal to his sense of humor and playfulness.

Kind of risky, but a novel approach.

The Cavs will also pitch him with new head coach Byron Scott on how he plans on using him. This is another dangerous gamble, as Scott likely will now cow tow at James’ feet like other coaches have, and may end up coming off too brusque. Much like he has come off to nearly every team he’s coached.

Finally, the Cavs will appeal to him on a roster basis due to an interesting development over the last 24 hours. Windhorst writes that the Cavs have received interest that the Raptors like the pieces Cleveland has for a sign and trade. (This makes sense, since they’re one of the few Bosh suitors who haven’t totally cleared their roster to make cap space.)

The Cavs will tell LeBron that if he re-signs, he can then help them to convince Bosh to take the max contract from the Raptors in a sign and trade, which would get him the extra year on his contract. It means the most money for Bosh, and a chance to play with LeBron. It’s Cleveland’s best shot to get back into the race, which has largely passed them by over the first two days of free agency.

The Cavs are banking on some long shots going into this morning’s meeting. But they’re going to need to. After all, their franchise is at stake.

Robin Lopez and T.J. Warren exchange contact, heated words (video)

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Robin Lopez whacked T.J. Warren in the head while chasing an offensive rebound. Warren didn’t like that, so he ran to the opposite end of the court and shoved Lopez to the floor. A heated confrontation ensued, though it didn’t escalate beyond yelling.

Warren received a flagrant foul, and Lopez was hit with a technical in the Suns’ 113-105 win over the Bulls.

Lakers blow 5-on-1 fastbreak (video)

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Corey Brewer is better at finishing fastbreaks than leading them.

Nice defense by Emmanuel Mudiay, too.

But at least the Lakers won.

Did Reggie Jackson distract Jimmy Butler into missing game-tying free throw? (video)

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With the Timberwolves trailing the Pistons by three and 6.2 seconds left, Jimmy Butler drew a foul on a 3-pointer.

Butler made the first two free throws then, just before he got the ball for the third, Reggie Jackson interrupted to talk to Stanley Johnson, who was in rebounding position. Butler missed the free throw, and Detroit won 100-97 after an intentional foul.

Butler said Jackson didn’t affect him, but Butler’s side eye during the delay at least appeared to speak loudly.

Bulls’ Kris Dunn dunks on T.J. Warren after savvy/explosive halfcourt drive (video)

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Kris Dunn had a nice weekend – 39 points, 13 assists and 11 rebounds as the Bulls beat the Hornets and lost to the Suns – punctuated by this dunk in Chicago’s 113-105 loss to the Suns last night.

T.J. Warren paid the price for Tyler Ulis overplaying a Robin Lopez screen Dunn cleverly never used.