Around the Hill: Where Will Lebron Go Next?

Jake Rosenstein, Drew Friedhoff and Matt Gentile

By Jake Rosenstein, Maroon-News Staff

This 2017-2018 season has been, without a doubt, the toughest in LeBron James’ storied career. The dumbfounded look and gaped fish mouth of coach Tyronn Lue summarizes the situation; LeBron does not currently play in a healthy basketball environment. While for the last decade it was a near certainty that The King would, at worst, reach the finals, this season creates serious doubts about LeBron’s future in the city of Cleveland.

You would have to be Nostradamus to predict the rest of James’ career. He has been rumored to take his talents to the Bay Area, possibly return to the Heat, or even revamp his Hollywood career as a member of the Lakers or Clippers. These opinions are mere speculation however, as he has made no mention of any moves past this season.

That’s why I believe that LeBron’s next move … will be to Tony’s Market State Liquor Store on 3114 Clark Avenue just a few blocks from Quicken Loans Arena to buy J.R. Smith another bottle of Hennessey. LeBron will not leave the Cavs in free agency.  You heard it here first, folks.

Here are several things that are more likely to happen than LeBron leaving his beloved city of Cleveland again: Derrick Rose becoming a professional gymnast, J.R. Smith passing a drug test, Isaiah Thomas being tall enough to ride the rollercoasters at Cedar Point, Dwyane Wade and Gabrielle Union inviting Tristan Thompson and Khloe Kardashian to a key party, Kyrie Irving starring in a remake of Jules Verne’s Around the World in Eighty Days and the exhumed cadaver of Wilt Chamberlain lining up at the 5 and leading the Cavs to the Finals. LeBron will be a Cavalier for the foreseeable future.

By Drew Friedhoff, Maroon-News Staff

As Lebron James nears the end his fifteenth season in the NBA, many have started to speculate who the three-time NBA champ, four-time MVP and 13-time All Star will be suiting up with at the start of the 2018-19 season.

In the USA Today article, “Power Ranking the Best Landing Spots for LeBron James if He Leaves Cleveland,” by Nick Schwartz, the Houston Rockets appear to be the favorites, whereas Bleacher Report writer Eric Pincus states in his column that the 76ers and Lakers are best suited to build a team around the superstar.

While all of these teams do have a real possibility of landing James, it is most likely that LeBron will be playing for the Pittsburgh Steelers to kick off next season.

Albeit the Steelers are in fact in the NFL, not the NBA, it would be in LeBron’s best interest to switch up the pace and switch leagues. With current members of the Steelers JuJu Smith-Schuster and Le’Veon Bell already voicing their support on Twitter for the possibility of LeBron becoming a future Steeler, Pittsburgh proves to be the perfect spot for the Cavalier to continue his career.

The 6’8”, 250-pounder is not only in peak physical condition to make for a great tight end, the NFL would give LeBron an exceptional political platform in preparation for his 2020 presidential run. James, using Twitter almost as much as our current president, has continuously expressed his discontent with the current administration and has apparently just the right amount of experience in government to be our nation’s president.

By Matt Gentile, Assistant National Sports Editor

Without a doubt, The LeBron Sweepstakes Round Two is going to be a hot topic of the league for months to come. The added interest of a plummeting Cavaliers team, LeBron not denying interest in joining Steph Curry and Kevin Durant and the possibility of a LeBronzo connection in LA are all cherries on top of this drama. It is very difficult to predict where LeBron will head this summer, but it is definitely easier to cross some destinations off the list.

For starters, LeBron is not staying in Cleveland. The toxic relationship with owner Dan Gilbert is well documented and, with his prime winding down, LeBron certainly will be looking for a more stable, trusted front office and coaching staff than he has in Cleveland. The media’s dream of LeBron heading to the Lakers to team up with Magic Johnson and the new Showtime era is also unlikely. With the reluctance of Paul George to commit to the Lakers and their abundance of money tied up in non-expiring contracts, it seems the Lakers’ front office has shifted its focus to the summer of 2019. Maybe LeBron will wait for that summer and sign a one-year deal somewhere, but in my opinion the more likely option is him signing with the LA Clippers.

Yup, the other team in LA will be home to the King. With Hall of Famer and front office guru Jerry West (architect of the Warrior’s core) at the realm, the Clippers are destined for success in the near future. LeBron wants to be in LA so he can grow his post-basketball brand; he already owns two houses in Los Angeles! With the Lakers unable to attract him with a lack of ready-to-win stars and limited cap space, the door is wide open for the Clippers. Never count Jerry West out, we’ve already seen big changes in the Clippers long-term investments with the recent Blake Griffin trade. Why not a few more moves to set themselves up for a pitch to LeBron?