Laker fans are possibly the one fanbase that doesn't love, or at least respect LeBron James. But if LBJ does decide to move, they may actually be a darkhorse contender for acquiring the two-time MVP. Would you make the deal, Laker fans?
I hate Lebron-gate. I hate baseless trade speculation. But right now, with so damn much of it going around, I just can't but help to get caught up in this hype.
The Lakers are deep in cap hell. They have no shot in hell of signing Lebron James to a contract, unless he wants a minimum contract-and who would give up 20 million a year? And yet, the Lakers have a better chance at aquiring Lebron than a lot of people think.
When looking over the contracts at a site like hoopsdata.com or hoopshype.com, I noticed something interesting. Andrew Bynum and Lamar Odom are about equal to a max contract (other low-contract players may have to be thrown in to make it go). Obviously these guys are the type of people whose total contribution exceeds that of any single player due to all the matchup issues they cause. Except for possibly Lebron.
If the Cleveland Cavaliers decide they have no chance of retaining Lebron, it's not beyond reason that they might try to put together a sign and trade package for him, rather than losing him for nothing, and it's not that strange that Lebron would participate in this process, so that he can go to a team that isn't as awful as some of the places he might go as an outright free agent. And with some of the garbage other teams are throwing around in their sign and trade packages, Bynum and Odom could probably be the best offer the Cavs get.
Personally I would hope that Mitch picked up the phone and made the offer. I'm a huge Odom fan, and I haven't given up on Bynum being a consistent monster yet. But I don't know how you can get a chance at a guy who could be Kobe's true successor (note I said could be-he's obviously not yet no matter what numbers he puts up, by the Laker fan standard of "guys who win rings").
Yet, over this year I've seen a ton of Laker fans absolutely hating on Lebron. I think a lot of it is the Cavs being pretty classless on the Christmas Day matchup with their stupid dances, but I don't blame Lebron for that debacle. It's more serious than that for a lot of Laker fans: they think he just wouildn't fit in the offense in any way shape or form. After his playoff loss tonight, I've even seen people throwing around that he's a quitter.
Personally I think all that drama is overblown. I don't think Lebron quit during last night's game, and I think all the other crap would be forgiven and forgotten if he showed up in the Forum Blue and Gold. Yet, currently there are is a strong contingent of Laker fans who are adamant that they would never make this move.
What do you think?