Alright, before I begin, just picture this.
What if the Cleveland Cavaliers convince LeBron James to stay with the team by trading for a player like Charlie Villanueva as a power-forward (cheaper than signing another star forward), and an upgrade at center from Big Z (how would that happen, I am not sure, but just stick with me on this).
Now, the Cavaliers head into the 09'-10' season with a starting lineup that looks something like this,
PG: Mo Williams
SG: Delonte West
SF: LeBron James
PF: Charlie Villanueva
C: Upgrade center from Big Z, so your choice.
To be honest, this would be the ultimate best case scenario, in regards to signing Charlie V and the center.
So, my question is, even with an extremely solid team like this, would James be able to capture his first title?
It would be no surprise to see the team end the year with the best or second-best record in the Eastern Conference, but when playoff time strolled along, would they even make it to the Finals?
From the look of things, the Cavaliers will probably not get an upgrade center from Big Z. That right there is a major concern, as Illgauskas is certainly aging, and, therefore, declining in production.
The Cavs might be able to pull out a deal that would allow them to obtain a forward of Villanueva's caliber—or maybe better. But would that be enough to win a championship?
Would they be able to get past a team like the Boston Celtics?
What about the Magic, was Cleveland's lack of a power forward the key to defeating Orlando this year?
If James does not get a superstar power forward, and a center better than Big Z on his team by next season, or the year after, there is a crazy possibility that James will not win a title for years to come.
Unless he leaves Cleveland, that is...