King James becomes a hot commodity after opting out of his contract

Charles Trainor Jr. |Miami Herald/MCT

Miami Heat's LeBron James is pushed away from the basket by San Antonio Spurs' Tim Duncan in the second quarter in Game 5 of the NBA Finals at the AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas, on Sunday, June 15, 2014.

Anita Wang, Sports Editor

 Basketball has always been a hot topic for this busy community with the 16-time champion Lakers to boast about, a geographic region that is known to produce some of the best players in the nation and now a rising Clippers team to bring even more pride to the city of Los Angeles. But perhaps the biggest buzz in basketball news around the globe is LeBron James’s decision to opt out of his contract with the Miami Heat, and what his next move will be.

James is arguably the best player in the nation and became a hot commodity the second the news of him becoming a free agent broke out. Any team would benefit from James’s leadership, basketball IQ and impeccable skills on both offense and defense. But where will he make his new home?

There have been a handful of teams in the mix.

 

Miami Heat

James can earn the most moola in Miami, but given that he makes the most endorsement money in the league, a high-paying contract doesn’t seem to matter much.

According to a report on ESPN, he wants head coach Pat Riley to improve the roster. That might mean obtaining a solid center because Chris Bosh has not been as effective as he could be, being only a power-forward. And of course, younger players to bring energy and pick up the defense would lift some weight off James’ shoulders so he wouldn’t have to be Mr. Do-It-All.

Former Long Beach State player James Ennis has been highly anticipated to join the Heat’s roster after leading his Australian league team to a championship title as the MVP.

Although James, Bosh and Dwayne Wade were given the moniker the Big Three, Bosh and Wade need to step up and show people the dream team they were supposed to be. Wade is completely capable of putting up numbers and changing the entire game, and has done so many times, but has been inconsistent, especially when most needed as seen during the Finals. Bosh just needs to stop playing like a girl.

With Riley’s determination and ability to give James what he wants and needs, this choice might be a no-brainer. Plus, I don’t think James wants to experience the ridicule for leaving his team again in search for a championship.

 

L.A. Clippers

He fits right into the scheme. A fast-paced player in a fast-paced team. The Clips are taking the team to the next level as Chris Paul and Blake Griffin have consistently made their team a worthy contender. Although they aren’t known for their playoff experience or bare any championships, these two All-Stars seem to have found their home and look to continue building this franchise along with their strong role players.

Having acquired players like veteran Caron Butler and former NBA Finals MVP Chauncey Billups, and currently fostering one of the best centers in the league, there is no doubt this team has become a desirable one to play for.

It is no surprise that the Clippers are a powerhouse, and LeBron would no doubt improve their defense. But this deal might cause the biggest imbalance in NBA history that it just wouldn’t be fair. This might bring about a memory similar to former NBA commissioner David Stern restricting Paul to play for the Lakers. Either way, Angelenos would love this deal, but James’ stance on the whole Donald Sterling issue most likely won’t land him here.

 

Chicago Bulls

One of the most popular teams in history could offer a great fan base. Merchandise sales would go up through the roof, but let’s stick to what’s important.

James had to do so much both offensively and defensively in the last season. With the Bulls’ defense, hunger for a championship and good coaching, it might be convincing enough. Now if only Derrick Rose can stop being so prone to injury.

 

Cleveland Cavaliers

If he’s looking to win, this would be a joke.

The Cavs not only finished with a 33-49 record, but they also don’t have enough players James would fare well with. He’s going to need more than Kyrie Irving. Unless David Blatt can crank out some cash and obtain an effective, well-rounded roster, this would probably be the most unappealing option for James.

Plus, don’t think the fans who burned his jersey and ridiculed him all year after his decision to leave Cleveland would be very happy. But then again, we’re talking about LeBron James. Maybe they’ll be more receptive this time.

 

Whatever James decides to do, wherever he goes, noise and success is sure to follow.

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