A SILLY REPORT
Patrick Creighton: Lebron James to the Warriors? #FakeNews
Patrick Creighton hosts “Nate & Creight” M-F 1-3p on SportsMap 94.1FM. Follow him on twitter at @pcreighton1
Thursday, ESPN published a report that “sources” told them that if the Golden State Warriors could create max cap space this offseason, he would take a meeting with them about signing there.
Also, if I wake up tomorrow at 6-4, totally ripped, with 9 figures in my bank account, I can take a meeting to date Scarlet Johansson. They have about the same percentage chance.
For the 2018-19 season, the Warriors are already projected at more than $27M over the cap. They have only 7 players under contract and Kevin Durant has a player option for $26.25M.
In order to sign LeBron to a max contract in the offseason, they would have to unload – are you ready - $62,611,051 from their payroll to accommodate a max $35.3M salary for James (who would be opting out of $35.6M in Cleveland to escape Dan Gilbert). That means trading at least 2 of either Klay Thompson ($19M in 2018-19), Draymond Green ($17.5M) and Andre Iguodala ($16M). Keep in mind that A) Thompson & Green are 27 and Iggy is 34 and B) they have to take nothing back.
How do you think Joe Lacob would feel about handing away Klay & Draymond for a pair of second round picks? As great as LeBron is, he isn’t worth both of those guys for their combined salaries, especially when he is seven years older than both of them.
Also, the Warriors are one more opt-in from Kevin Durant to holding his full Bird rights, meaning if KD can swallow “only” making $26.25M next season, he can sign a full five-year $200M+ deal the following year. Durant is also only 29. By opting out, KD delays the process to get a megadeal.
To make things more interesting, LeBron is on record saying he wants to “break the mold” when he becomes a free agent after this season. Thanks to the work he and NBPA President Chris Paul put in this past year to change the “Over-36” rule to the “Over-38” rule, LeBron can sign one more 5 year megadeal, but it has to be this offseason.
Realistically, there’s no way the Warriors could make enough cap space to afford James, which makes the entire “report” a huge farce, and pure clickbait.
While the headline may be sexy, don’t believe the hype.
(Salary information obtained from spotrac.com)