James, Wade, Paul, Anthony Want to Team Up?
Another day, another story involving LeBron James. It seems like everything that James does – in person or over social media – becomes a headline these days. While most of the articles about James seem to make a story out of nothing, this latest report involving James is, indeed, big.
In a candid interview with Howard Beck of Bleacher Report, James made several comments that immediately went viral.
First, he admitted that the initial plan in the summer of 2010 was for he, Dwyane Wade and Carmelo Anthony to team up on the Miami HEAT, but that scenario fell apart when Anthony inked a five-year extension rather than the three-year extensions James and Wade signed. James confirmed that he had hinted to Anthony that he should take the three-year contract so they could team up, but Anthony opted for more guaranteed money and James and Wade ended up filling out their star-studded HEAT roster with Chris Bosh instead.
However, the biggest piece of news to come from the Bleacher Report interview is that James still hopes to team up with his best friends – Anthony, Wade and Chris Paul – at some point in the future.
“I really hope that, before our career is over, we can all play together,” James told Bleacher Report. “At least one, maybe one or two seasons—me, ‘Melo, D-Wade, CP—we can get a year in. I would actually take a pay cut to do that.”
“It would be pretty cool,” James added. “I’ve definitely had thoughts about it. … We’ll see.”
James gave a very vague timetable for when he hopes to do this, reportedly stating that maybe they would do it at the end of their respective careers or maybe sooner.
Since the story came out, James has made some more comments regarding the topic.
“It would definitely be cool if it happened, but we don’t know how realistic it could be to have us four,” James said, according to Jason Lloyd of Ohio.com. “If you got an opportunity to work with three of your best friends, no matter what, it’s not even about sports, it’s about being around guys that you don’t even have to say nothing, you automatically know. We just have that type of history. Can it happen? I don’t know if it can even happen, but it would be cool.”
Wade didn’t want to get involved and say anything that could become a distraction for Miami. He refused to discuss the possible scenario in-depth, offering only one quote and then shooting down any follow-up questions
“I heard it. I read it. But I’m not really jumping into the headlines right now,” Wade said, according to Ohio.com. “I’m focused on my teammates in here. So as cool as the headlines are, it has nothing to do with what we’re trying to do in here. So I’m not going to jump into the headlines.”
Anthony, on the other hand, was happy to talk about the dream scenario. He seemed to sign off on the idea and added that – like James – he’d be willing to take less money to make it happen.
“I’d take a pay cut if it happens,” Anthony said, according to Ohio.com. “I think we all would have to take a pay cut.”
Anthony was asked if the stars would team up in New York, but stated that he would prefer it happen “somewhere warm.”
“I think by that time [in your career], you want to go somewhere warm,” Anthony said. “By that time. That’s later. That would be later – retirement — … I’m just adding fuel to the fire.”
Paul, it seems, has not responded to the Bleacher Report story yet.
Based on Anthony’s comments, it sounds like the stars are talking about doing this years from now – when they’re past their prime and nearing retirement.
That should comfort Cleveland fans, who have been worried about losing James ever since reading the quotes and seeing so much recent drama surround the team.
That drama includes rumors of Kyrie Irving wanting to leave, James’ camp threatening that he could leave as a free agent this summer, Irving and James sending cryptic tweets, James unfollowing the Cavaliers on Twitter then refusing to discuss why and more. These quotes about wanting to team up with his buddies just adds to the circus in Cleveland.
Apparently James gave the interview to Beck in early February, before the recent drama unfolded, but his quote was enough to concern Cavaliers general manager David Griffin.
Griffin recently had a private conversation with James, according to Joe Vardon of Cleveland.com. The discussion “was sparked by James’ comments to Bleacher Report” and the talk “was positive and productive, with James echoing recent public statements about an upward trend for the Cavs heading into the playoffs.”
The Cavaliers are currently 51-20, which puts them in first place in the Eastern Conference.
This is certainly an interesting story to follow. James, Anthony, Wade and Paul are very close and often vacation together with their families, so this is likely something they’ve talked about quite a bit and this is just the first that we – the public – are hearing about it. For now, it remains somewhat unrealistic given each players’ contract and the fact that at least three of the players would have to leave a team that they’ve been loyal too. Still, it’s fun to discuss and that’s why it has captured the attention of the basketball world for the last 24 hours.
New Basketball Insiders Podcast
Basketball Insiders’ publisher Steve Kyler and Senior NBA writer Joel Brigham get into the Cavaliers’ drama, the virtue of following a team on social media, the Bulls and Pacers, where things are headed with the Lakers and whether Byron Scott will be back with L.A. next season. Listen below:
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