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Report: The Lakers want to chase LeBron and Melo next summer. Is that news?

Jul 17, 2013, 2:46 PM EDT

LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, Tyson Chandler AP

So let me get this right: A team with massive amounts of cap space next summer that wants to rebuild free agency is going to go after the two biggest names potentially on the board?

Shocking. Who could have predicted that?

So apparently the Lakers are going to try and go after LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony next summer, so reports Ramona Shelburne and Brian Windhorst at ESPN.

The Los Angeles Lakers, whose plan to re-sign center Dwight Howard did not pan out this offseason, are poised to rebuild fast by focusing on the two biggest free agents of 2014 –LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony, front-office sources have told ESPN.

Opinions are split on whether the Lakers can actually land James or Anthony, with one source calling it “realistic” and another saying it was “far-fetched at this point.” Nonetheless, the Lakers have made it clear they are positioning themselves for a run at one and perhaps even two of the superstars who could become free agents in 2014 by refusing to commit to any contract past this next season, multiple sources have said.

Put me in the far-fetched category. And if there is any category between that and “impossible” I’ll move into that one. I mean nothing is impossible, but this dream is standing right next to Mr. Impossible with his arm around him.

First, I don’t think LeBron leaves Miami. He will opt out next year to get the security of a five-year deal, but I don’t think he bolts. His image and his international brand are at all-time highs right now, and whether they win a title next year or not if he leaves he’ll take another blow to that image. Yes, if the Heat are going to contend three years from now that roster needs changes, but I think LeBron trusts Pat Riley to do that in a way he never trusted Cleveland’s management. Why leave when you just have to recruit players to come to South Beach to play with the best player on the planet and compete for titles?

If he does leave he’s only going somewhere where he can win instantly. Is LeBron going to go into a West with a young Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook to team with Carmelo Anthony and an aging Kobe Bryant, two players who want and needs the ball in their hands to be effective.

Finally, I don’t think Anthony leaves his hometown Knicks. He wants to win there. Yes, like LeBron he will opt out to get the five years, but he’s not bolting.

Even the ESPN article reporting this pretty much calls this a pipe dream.

“It’s all wishful thinking at this point,” a league source with knowledge of the situation told ESPN. “Teams are doing more wishing than LeBron is wanting right now.

“It’s not about where LeBron wants to go [to win]. He already has two rings. If LeBron moved to Reno, teams would come to him.”

But trust me, we’re going to write about this a lot in the next year. LeBron and ‘Melo are going to refuse to discuss it and the Internet abhors a vacuum. Speculation will fill that void.

  1. loungefly74 - Jul 18, 2013 at 8:53 AM

    Lebron has the best gig in Miami…why leave that? The foundation he has built the past 3 years there is phenomenal and they have a great shot of winning at least 3 more titles. He should stay and cement his place among the greatest (GOAT?) to ever play.

    I don’t know what Melo should do. The contracts NY possess are massive till 2014-15(?) immobilizing their ability to shake up the roster. Unless they continue to add some quality role players, it will be tough to overcome Miami. Does Melo have a legit shot in NY? absolutely…but a lot of things must fall into place.

    I’m not going to worry about the Lakers. They are the Lakers. They will attract some high quality player albeit not Lebron…but they will field a competitive team in the 2014 season.

    The Lakers are paying their dues from the cost of going to 3 finals….and that’s okay. I’m sure every team would gladly take a few/couple rings knowing there would be the chance of a few “down” years in the process.

    • muhangis - Nov 12, 2013 at 9:40 AM

      Don’t want Melo. Lebron, yes.

      Melo (though extremely talented) is a big waste of money, cause he simply is not championship material.

      And in Miami, Wade is starting to age. Bosh has been mediocre for the team all along. Miami around Lebron doesn’t have a bright future… Lebron wants to join some younger players in the league.

      • loungefly74 - Nov 25, 2013 at 10:51 AM

        true…i guess it all depends on what pieces Miami can bring to the table the next couple years…

  2. azarkhan - Jul 18, 2013 at 11:56 AM

    “Why leave when you just have to recruit players to come to South Beach to play with the best player on the planet and compete for titles?”

    Exactly right. James is staying in Miami. As for Anthony, who cares? He’s not going to lead any team to a title because he’s not a team first player.

  3. allthewaylive1 - Jul 18, 2013 at 2:25 PM

    I agree azarkan. LeBron going to LA doesn’t make sense any way you slice it. He is not going to LA to help lengthen Kobe’s career; why should he? As it concerns Cleveland I think the ppl who keep writing about the possibility of LeBron going back to Cleveland need to rewind, and recall. He left Cleveland for a number of reasons all of which were legit. He took less money to go to South Beach so it is definitely NOT about who can afford to buy his services. Dan Dumbell stepped over the line with the comments he made about LeBron after he left so why would he go back to Cleveland? Wherever he may decide to go IF he leaves the Heat–he won’t–it won’t be LA and it certainly won’t be Cleveland. As for Anthony, who cares?

  4. jprcox - Jul 18, 2013 at 4:19 PM

    Lebron will work on legacy, and the Lakers don’t represent a better option to win, or building character for his desired profile. If he wants to look at achieving MJ status, he needs to stay in Miami and build more titles. If he wants to become beloved by his hometown he will move back to Cleveland with a reasonable chance of wining more titles.

    Apart from a short-lived “glitzy” splash, LA doesn’t offer anything Lebron wants at this point.

  5. cosme27 - Jul 18, 2013 at 11:31 PM

    No way in hell that Kobe would give the team to lebron like wade did! As long as Kobe is there he can’t have anyone that some could consider better then him, plus why would lebron help him get more rings, when he is probably trying to surpass him

  6. 1historian - Jul 21, 2013 at 12:18 PM

    As a Celtics fan I hate LA as much as anybody (still have my t-shirt from 1984!) but I have to say that if there is any team/outfit/organization that could pull something like this off it’s LA.

    But I can’t see it happening – it would take a ton of Moxie and a touch of je-ne-sais-quoi and the present crowd running the show in lalaland has neither of those qualities.

    Mr. James would, however, look just fine in a Celtics green shirt.

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