LeBron James Rumored to Potentially Join Lakers, Clippers in 2018 Free Agency

Mike ChiariFeatured ColumnistJune 8, 2017

Cleveland Cavaliers' LeBron James (23) stares against the Boston Celtics during the first half of Game 4 of the NBA basketball Eastern Conference finals, Tuesday, May 23, 2017, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Tony Dejak/Associated Press

With the Cleveland Cavaliers on the brink of elimination from the 2017 NBA Finals, Kevin O'Connor of The Ringer reported Thursday that LeBron James may consider signing with the Los Angeles Lakers or Los Angeles Clippers during 2018 free agency. 

James and the Cavs fell 118-113 to the Golden State Warriors on Wednesday and are down 3-0 in the NBA Finals.

In support of rumblings regarding James potentially heading west, O'Connor referenced an article by The Vertical's Adrian Wojnarowski last year in which he revealed league-wide belief that LeBron may not stay in Cleveland forever.

O'Connor also mentioned Jalen Rose saying on ESPN's First Take this week that he thinks James will eventually play in California since he lives close to L.A.'s Staples Center:

The four-time NBA MVP left Cleveland once before to play for the Miami Heat, but he returned in 2014 with the stated goal of bringing a championship to his home region.

James accomplished that by leading the Cavaliers to a come-from-behind NBA Finals triumph over the Warriors last year, but a repeat is looking increasingly unlikely.

While no team is close to touching the Cavs in the Eastern Conference, bringing championship glory back to the Los Angeles area could conceivably be an attractive challenge for James.

Following the 2017-18 season, LeBron has a $35.6 million player option to remain with Cleveland in 2018-19, per Spotrac.