If all of the recent noise created by LeBron James or his associates – cryptic tweets, associates saying he could leave the Cavaliers again in free agency, unfollowing the team on Twitter, overt contempt for his teammates’ play, stating a desire to team up with Carmelo Anthony, Dwyane Wade and Chris Paul – were a ploy designed to gain leverage, it apparently worked.
The Cavs like to downplay that — “It’s hard enough to win without worrying about a damn Twitter,” Lue said — but officials across the organization have been nervously monitoring LeBron’s on-court tantrums. “It’s time for everyone to stop all the glaring and just compete,” Lue said.
The organization is confident James won’t leave again, but officials acknowledge it would be at least a slight possibility if Cleveland flames out.
Remember, the Cavaliers reportedly didn’t fear LeBron leaving over Tristan Thompson‘s prolonged contract negotiation. Not only was re-signing Thompson key to Cleveland contending this season, LeBron’s agent – Rich Paul – represented the big man.
If that situation didn’t get the organization kowtowing to LeBron, what would?
LeBron, who will be a free agent this summer and probably next, has gotten more power. If that’s all he wants, the Cavs should be able to handle it.
It also helps that they’re aware of the possibility of him leaving, so they can guard against it.