Winderman: Forget New York, Cleveland can get LeBron and Bosh
Well, so much for having to miss Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Finals.
Learning that it might be better off next time to actually go live when it comes to “Larry King Live,” CNN has released the entire transcript of Tuesday’s taped interview with LeBron James, after several outlets reported the content of the interview that airs Friday at 9 p.m. Eastern.
Reading through the transcript, it is as vapid as your typical Larry King interview, although Larry’s hair again looks marvelous.
What has gotten lost in many of the interpretations of James’ non-answers to King’s non-questions is the element of James saying Cleveland has an “edge” in the process.
In many outposts, that has been taken as James attempting to climb the same mountain with the same Sherpas, therefore leaving the likes of Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and Joe Johnson free for the other cap-space teams, without James pairing up for 2010-11.
What that overlooks is what seemingly has been overlooked since the start of the process:
The capped-out Cavaliers emerging as a prime player in the process, with James already in tow.
When it comes to sign-and-trades, Cleveland has plenty of prime real estate to offer.
There is Anderson Varejao’s $7 million for 2010-11.
There is the $9.3 million Mo Williams is due next season.
There is J.J. Hickson’s $1.5 million.
There is Delonte West’s $4.5 million for next season that can be bought out for $500,000 by Aug. 2.
And that’s not even getting into Antawn Jamison or setting up Shaq with a new deal and then including him in a package.
In the interview with King, James continually references the possibility of playing with another leading free agent next season. He just does not say where.
If the Raptors are to lose Bosh, they could do worse than the energy of Varejao alongside Bargnani. Heck, there even could be a Jamario Moon homecoming.
For weeks, the notion of James-Bosh, James-Johnson or James-Free Agent X were of unions in New York, Chicago, Miami or elsewhere.
But Danny Ferry may just find himself with an opportunity that Mike Brown never received.
One last, post-elimination shot to save his job.
Ira Winderman writes regularly for NBCSports.com and covers the Heat and the NBA for the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.