The Cavs’ recent flurry of trades may have been more about the team’s future, rather than surrounding LeBron James with talent this season, in hopes of him staying with the team.
The reasoning behind the moves could be viewed as either one of those explanations, and time will tell. Currently, only the Cavs front office really knows what the plan for the future is.
It’s no secret that there’s been some bad blood between James and Cavs owner Dan Gilbert in the past. Gilbert was furious with James when he left Cleveland the first time, but then welcomed him back with open arms. The relationship then soured when Gilbert fired former general manager David Griffin, and things have been a bit rocky since.
Bleacher Report’s Howard Beck reports that a recent power struggle between Gilbert and James has been brewing, and it’s affecting the relationship between the two of them. The report reads:
“LeBron wants to be in charge of everything, which is what puts him at odds with Dan,” one source said. “Dan wants to be in charge of everything.”
The belief is that Gilbert, having reasserted control after chasing out Griffin, will rebuff James’ request for a no-trade clause, or any other measures that give him leverage. And that will be enough to drive James away.
“Dan Gilbert’s not going to do what it takes to keep him,” the same source predicted. “Not a chance in hell he’s going to give him a no-trade clause, or let him dictate contract terms.”
This certainly isn’t surprising. James has always wanted to run the show, as a player-coach, general manager and capologist — but Gilbert has likely reached his tipping point.