And regardless of what ESPN would have you believe (has the word "Cavs" even been mentioned in their 1,497 different shows on free agency?), he will also meet with his home town team Saturday morning.
At 11 am, the Cavs (and presumably new head coach Byron Scott) will meet with LeBron James in an effort to convince the King to remain in Cleveland where he's played for the last seven years.
Scott was formally introduced at a press conference this afternoon, and even before the organization gets an opportunity to speak with James, Scott made comments that could either directly or indirectly be constructed at LBJ.
When talking about his philosophy, Scott said, "I can't let go of my roots; we're going to be a running team, I think it is something we can do."
We'll still run some Princeton (offense) but the emphasis is to get up and down the floor."
Stop right there.
For approximately the last four years, that's exactly what every Cavalier fan has wanted to hear. There's only so many times we can watch the "clear out, isolate LeBron at 25-feet and watch him go one-on-five" offense...or a variation of the "Clogged Toilet Offense" (coined by Bill Simmons).
Analysts like Charles Barkley have pined for the Cavs to push the ball in transition more. It only makes sense—the Cavs have athletic bigs (Anderson Varejao, J.J. Hickson, Antawn Jamison), potent three-point shooters (Mo Williams, Anthony Parker), and of course, a 6'9" beast to lead the break.
Brian Windhorst pointed this out mid-press conference, and I completely agree. This is a direct appeal to LeBron.
Scott also talked about his days in Los Angeles, and this was the one quote that will stand out to almost everyone:
"There's nothing like winning at home...I won three championships in my home town and there's not a better feeling."
You can figure that one out.
So on to the obvious questions...what impact will this have on James' free agency? And how will the Cavaliers now approach tomorrow's meeting?
Scott is a coach that has generally had a positive connection with most of his players. Even though he was fired in New Orleans, he still has a strong relationship with point guard Chris Paul and spoke with CP3 about LeBron.
And, as mentioned above, he will change philosophies that are better suited to James' strengths.
He was a respected player and is a proven coach, two things that could help the Cavaliers' pitch. Scott has more wins and NBA Finals appearances than Mike D'Antoni (Knicks), Avery Johnson (Nets), Erik Spoelstra (Heat), Tom Thibodeau (Bulls), and...whoever the Clips trot out there.
It might not seem important, but as Scott said in his press conference, LeBron is a player that "wants to be coached, wants to be pushed, and is a team player."
These are things that could be mentioned tomorrow morning...but highlighting how a change of style could better fit LeBron and the current roster will be a major point of emphasis.
Another possible topic? Personnel change.
This one will come from the management standpoint. While many are busy pairing LeBron and Chris Bosh in Miami, Chicago, New York, or wherever, few give the Cavaliers a chance to pull off such a deal.
But according to sources, the Raptors like some of the pieces the Cavs can offer in a possible sign-and-trade. Cleveland can give a combination of prospects (most notably J.J. Hickson), expiring contracts (Jamario Moon, Anthony Parker, Sebastian Telfair, and Delonte West, who's contract is not guaranteed), and cap relief.
And, as Windhorst stated, the Cavs can also take some not-so-friendly contracts off of Toronto's hands (someone like Hedo Turkoglu or Jose Calderon), which is something that Miami, Chicago, or New York can't do. They could save the Raptors $5-$7 million more instantly.
If that happens, suddenly the Cavs' mid-level exception becomes that much more attractive to guys like Ray Allen or Mike Miller.
Admittedly, this isn't the most likely scenario, but it's still one to consider. Of course, it all depends on Bosh wanting to play in Cleveland...oh, and LeBron too.
Finally, it'll be integral to stress how important LeBron is to the city.
Clevelanders are organizing a "fan tunnel" down E. 9th Street before the meeting to show their support. Not that other cities won't appreciate him, but this is LeBron's home. The city has always had an unwavering love and support for him.
But most importantly (and this is where Scott comes in), I would guess that the organization would want to sell LeBron on the unmatchable feeling of winning a championship for your home town.
Tomorrow morning will go a long way in determining James' future. It's believed around the league that the Knicks didn't do themselves any favors with their presentation yesterday, but the Nets certainly did.
Don't worry Cleveland; we'll have the whole weekend to dissect how the proceedings (or the version of the proceedings we hear about) went.
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