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Dan Gilbert has ‘nothing but appreciation and gratitude’ for LeBron James

LeBron James must now follow in the footsteps of former Lakers superstars, as Los Angeles will begin building the team around him.

LeBron James is now a member of the Los Angeles Lakers, and this time there’s no letter written in Comic Sans by Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert.

The announcement of James’ departure from Ohio came on Sunday through his agency, Klutch Sports. What came next was a cascade of signings by the Lakers, including Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Javale McGee, and Lance Stephenson.

Now, the Cavaliers must rebuild their organization after the best NBA player on the planet left for the second time. Obviously, we all know the story of the last time James left the Cavaliers. This time, owner Gilbert was a bit more graceful.

In a letter published on the team website, Gilbert said he was grateful for everything that LeBron had done for northeast Ohio and the team. For his part, LeBron left a nice note on his Instagram story for the time being. Word is James will make a formal announcement later in July about leaving Cleveland.

The fact that LeBron joined the Lakers may upset folks around the league, as it may seem like the easy way out. However, Gilbert being cordial as James exits the Cavaliers yet again is a nice way to start the breakup.

Now, we have to focus on what happens in Cleveland. The Cavaliers are carrying a significant salary figure and don’t have many players left that will garner them win in the Eastern Conference next year. Is Kevin Love on the move? What do the Cavaliers do now that James is no longer wearing wine and gold? How can they rebuild a franchise that leveraged their future for multiple NBA Finals appearances?

Los Angeles will be infinitely interesting next season, but so too will LeBron’s old team.