Brian Windhorst can’t envision LeBron James moving to the Western Conference
Another offseason, another LeBron James free agency drama. Many believe that if the Cleveland Cavaliers don’t win a ring this year, James will leave the Cavs for the second time in his career. Several teams are up in the running for the King’s next destination. But according to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst, if James leaves Cleveland, his next destination will be somewhere in the Eastern Conference still.
In a guest appearance on Pardon the Interruption, Windhorst shared his thoughts on the James free agency drama:
“I just cannot see him going to the Western Conference. I can’t see it,” Windhorst said. “Unless it’s just like, ‘I want to be happy and live in Los Angeles.’ If he and Paul George go to the Lakers — unless there’s some other move that I can’t see — and they’re competing with the Rockets and Warriors, they may win 47 games and be the fourth seed and then be (knocked) out in the second round. Maybe he wants to do that. … My gut says he still wants to compete for championships, so he’s got to stay East.”
Critics point to the Los Angeles Lakers or the Philadelphia 76ers — who both have a young core and available cap space to welcome James. Since Windhorst already crossed out teams in the West, that leaves the Sixers. Yet Windhorst also dismissed them, citing James’ playstyle:
“What you need with LeBron James is guys who can shoot. Ben Simmons cannot shoot. LeBron’s a ball-handler. Ben Simmons is a ball-handler. If LeBron came to the 76ers, Joel Embiid would be turned into Chris Bosh or turned into Kevin Love. He’d be told to stand in the corner and shoot threes. I’m not sure that’s what Joel Embiid wants.”