NBA is a business and the coronation of James as the face of the league has been brewing since he was a junior in high school.
The unexpected ascent of freshman phenom Carmelo Anthony temporarily complicated the plan in 2003, but Anthony's poor all-around game and off-the-court issues put this plan back on track.
I'm not knocking on James' game. He is an amazing athlete. But his presence is not conductive to a winning environment. He clogs the lane and ruins his teammates careers. I don't have a problem with him shooting 25 times per game because most good teams need a go-to guy like Allen Iverson, Kobe Bryant, Tracy McGrady, Paul Pierce, Vince Carter, etc. While guys like Iverson are getting bashed for being a ballhog and a loser, how is James immune to such criticism? Why is it always his "supporting cast's " fault? The bottom line is that despite David Stern's best effort to manipulate the playoffs and the team having the 2nd highest payroll in the league (an ownership change enforced by Stern), this guy is just not a winner.
I know he would say the right thing with the press and everything, but his ego is big. The guy is a diva who acts like he is the GM. He couldn't co-exist with established high-scoring volume shooters like Ricky Davis, Larry Hughes, and Dajuan Wagner. If you remember correctly, Wagner, who was supposed to be the future of the franchise, was only 20 when James was drafted. Wagner was instantly moved to the end of the bench and his career was ruined. Davis was shipped out because James couldn't co-exist with him.
He hated playing with Eric Snow. He drove out Drew Gooden, so his buddy Anderson Varejao can land a huge contract. He dominates the ball and clogges up the lane, so Larry Hughes couldn't slash. I find it hard to believe Hughes was signed to be a spot up shooter. Wally Szczerbiak, Donyell Marshall, David Wesley, Jeff McInnis, Damon Jones, Eric Snow, and Alan Henderson all saw their careers going down the drain after joining the Cavs. They were all productive players in other teams. Jamario Moon, Anthony Parker, Leon Powe could soon join them.
Funny how Ben Wallace, Shannon Brown, Carlos Boozer, and Sasha Pavlovic become productive players again once they leave the Cavs.
The Cavs went through makeovers after makeovers, big acquisitions come and go, yet they are never that good. The problem is James.
Flip Murray proved to be a good scorer with the Cavs, yet they chose to resign the limited Daniel Gibson due to his ties with James.
Don't even get me started on that year when they made it to the finals. It was arguably the worst finals in the history of the NBA. The East was a joke and they were swept. None of the game was even close.
The best role for James is an off-the-ball, complementary role a la Grant Hill. He can be an all-around player rather than the guy who constantly dominates the ball and eats up the shot clock. He's a small forward, not a point guard. He can try to make his teammates' lives easier (7 assists isn't that great when the ball is always in your hands) instead of blaming them for his own failure. Hell, take a pay cut so he can play with a high-scoring guard like Kobe Bryant or Dwyane Wade or an all-star point guard like Steve Nash, Chauncey Billups, or Chris Paul. Too bad his ego won't allow him to do so.