CLEVELAND, OH - JUNE 16:  LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers reacts against the Golden State Warriors during Game Six of the 2015 NBA Finals at Quicken Loans Arena on June 16, 2015 in Cleveland, Ohio. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

LeBron James could leave Cavaliers again in free agency

LeBron James left the Cleveland Cavaliers once in free agency. Could he really do it again?

Stephen A. Smith told Jorge & Izzy on ESPN Radio don’t rule anything out when it comes to James (as transcribed by NBC Sports’ Dan Feldman):

One of the things LeBron’s inner circle religiously says is that, “Yeah, he’s back, but don’t you think for one second that he’s going to sit idly by and watch the franchise take him for granted and put too much excess weight on his shoulders the way that they used to when he was in Cleveland the first go-round. Think that he’s permanently going to stay in Cleveland if you want to. Do not try him.”

Yes, he is committed to trying to bring a championship back to Cleveland. And it does seem to be something that he would never do again. But don’t rule anything out when it comes to LeBron James.

I’m not saying this. I’m telling you specifically what I was told by people close to him, and I’ve been told that for months.

What everybody close to him continuously reminds me of is, “Don’t you dare take this guy for granted or think for one second he’s trapped into staying in Cleveland just because he came back. Don’t put it past him to get so annoyed that he’ll leave again if he feels like he’s being taken for granted, ran into the ground and essentially misused.” That’s what they say.

James has a player option for 2016-17 and can become a free agent this summer, which might be expected with the NBA’s new TV money to kick in next season and the salary cap expected to spike along with it. He could still re-sign with the Cavaliers on a new deal, but he’s essentially free to sign with any team he chooses once he opts out.

If the Cavaliers do take him for granted, though, it’s possible he spurns the city of Cleveland a second time.

Marcelo Villa

About Marcelo Villa

Marcelo is an associate editor at The Sports Daily, and has covered the San Diego Chargers for Bleacher Report. He also writes for Sportsdirect Inc.