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PBT Extra: LeBron James opts out, now what happens?

Jun 24, 2014, 1:02 PM EDT

LeBron James has informed the Miami Heat he is opting out — everyone knew this would happen, yet everyone is going crazy about the possibilities. Everyone is playing fantasy basketball — how can we get LeBron and Carmelo Anthony/Kevin Love on my team?

The fantastic Matt Stroup stops by for the latest PBT Extra to talk about why LeBron James did this, where he might end up, and why at the end of the day he’s almost certainly pulling a Miami Heat jersey over his head at the start of next season. If he’s not, it’s not about the other contenders, it’s about what Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade choose to do.

  1. floreskins - Jun 24, 2014 at 1:10 PM

    Now what happens is that ESPN doesn’t cover any other sporting event for the next 2 months. Round the clock coverage of Lebron’s tweets, tweets about Lebron, and my favorite tweets about the tweets about Lebron. This blog seems to be at a moderately pathetic 50% coverage.

    • kb2408 - Jun 24, 2014 at 1:38 PM

      To quote Mike Tyson when he was being reprimanded about his on air language, ” If you don’t like it, turn your station!”

      • daddyghi - Jun 25, 2014 at 2:40 AM

        re-quote “if you donth like ith, thurn your sthathion!

  2. j0esixpack - Jun 24, 2014 at 1:10 PM

    “The Indecision – Part II”

  3. thenew013 - Jun 24, 2014 at 1:18 PM

    I agree with the comment I read that he should help take multiple teams to championships. Go see what its like to live in LA or Houston

  4. antistratfordian - Jun 24, 2014 at 1:24 PM

    LeBron just holds the entire future of the league in his hands. No pressure.

    • kb2408 - Jun 24, 2014 at 1:48 PM

      While the Spurs gear up for a repeat. Timmy rides off into the sunset with his 6th title. My first official prediction for next season.

      • fanofthegame79 - Jun 24, 2014 at 2:14 PM

        ……..And your first official wrong prediction for next season.

      • antistratfordian - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:17 PM

        They’ve geared up for repeats before. I think they’re satisfied in San Antonio.

      • loungefly74 - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:41 PM

        Spurs are a great team. A repeat is definitely a possibilty.

      • sportsfan18 - Jun 24, 2014 at 5:19 PM

        My first official prediction for next season…

        The Lakers will still suck and NOT make the playoffs.

    • spursareold - Jun 24, 2014 at 2:39 PM

      The league would go on just fine if LeBron blew out his knee and could never play again. They’d just move on to “the next media thing”. MJ…Kobe…LeBron…???

      • antistratfordian - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:22 PM

        Just like in 2010, LeBron’s decision has a major impact on the league. He is basically about to decide which team wins a conference next year.

        And Kobe was never a “media thing” – only in a negative sense. He made most of his media noise because of legal issues and team disputes.

      • loungefly74 - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:45 PM

        thats exactly right, Spursareold because its a team sport. Yes, it is a “star-driven” league but fans root for teams. only losers, kids, and chicks root for a player…

  5. honkerdawg - Jun 24, 2014 at 1:26 PM

    Who cares!!!!!!

  6. chitownmatt - Jun 24, 2014 at 1:30 PM

    Chris Bosh needs to do whatever he can to get the best contract and most money he can.

    And neither Wade or Bosh should need to bow down before ‘the king’ and beg to be on his team.

    Both LeBron and Wade are going to make millions in endorsements regardless of whether they win or lose. Wade will probably go on to be a famous commentator after his career and make even more money.
    Bosh’s future is no where nearly as bright as either LBJ or Wade and he needs to make as much money as he can.

  7. rrhoe - Jun 24, 2014 at 1:30 PM

    I am so disgusted with what the NBA has become. They should just put the best players on one team and let that team barnstorm the league. Or just make the league 10 super teams. The small market teams have no shot in today ‘s NBA,there’s no parity whatsoever.Plus we now have players that want to be GM’s too,what a league.

    • gs7101 - Jun 24, 2014 at 1:40 PM

      The San Antonio Spurs are considered a small market team — but I never understood this logic, because San Antonio is the seventh largest city in the United States.

      • spursareold - Jun 24, 2014 at 2:37 PM

        It’s the media market size. SA is a good sized city, there is just almost nothing around it, maybe a half dozen bedroom communities.

      • sportsfan18 - Jun 25, 2014 at 1:48 AM


        correct, San Antonio IS the 7th largest U.S. city…

        just Google “NBA market sizes” or list of nba market sizes and similar things and you’ll find a lot of articles about this…

        money comes from TV

        heck, the Minnesota Timberwolves have a BIGGER TV market than Miami…

        Miami is in the bottom half of TV market size in the NBA…

        it comes down to the TV market size and San Antonio is like 3rd from the bottom of the NBA cities…

    • bhunter1995 - Jun 24, 2014 at 1:46 PM

      The two western finalists were San Antonio and OKC. Neither are in “Big markets”. Meanwhile the Knicks, who are in the biggest market in the nation besides LA are horrible (and look how the Lakers are doing right now as well). The market size is a factor when it comes to F/A signings, that much is true, but with the internet and high quality TV, players who are in small markets can still rake in endorsements if they are winning games. Look at KD he is one of the most endorsed guys in the league and he plays in one of the smallest markets.

      Look at the playoff teams in the west

      OKC – Small market

      SA – Small market

      Portland – Small market

      Memphis – Small/Mid level market

      GS – Mid market

      HOU – Big market

      DAL – Big market

      Clippers – Big market

      Only three of the eight western playoff teams were big market and only one of those three made it out of the first round. So….

      What really makes or breaks a team is management and not every team has good people in management positions. Look at the Knicks, great location and horrible team because of mismanagement and then look at the opposite side of the spectrum, the Spurs play in a small market and dominate because of good choices made by both Pop and the upper management.

      You are complaining about a lack of parity based on location when in reality there is a lack of parity because of incompetence.

      • rrhoe - Jun 24, 2014 at 2:09 PM

        bhunter1995 & gs7101:

        I see both points,but small market teams that have success all have one thing in common: Their core players where drafted by the teams, but now you have players that aren’t even drafted as of yet wanting to dictate what teams they go to now. I will admit,for whatever reason most small market teams suck at drafting,which is their lifeline. And for the record guys,to me the leagues better teams are in the small markets.

    • campcouch - Jun 24, 2014 at 2:03 PM

      The majority of teams in the NBA are “small market”. NYC,LA,Chi,Philly and Dallas are top 5 markets. The championships have been 6 to 5 West with 4 different western teams and 5 eastern teams in the Finals. Two “small market” teams from the west and five from the east have played in those Finals. Parity abounds and the small market teams have the same chance as the large markets,even more so considering the states of NYK,LAL and Boston.

    • malek773 - Jun 24, 2014 at 2:32 PM

      The league hasn’t become this, its always been this. Unlike the MLB and NFL, the NBA goes through spurts of teams having dominance. In the 90s the Bulls dominated. In the 80s the Lakers were the ones on top most of the time. Boston dominated the 60s. In the 2000s its been the Lakers and Spurs mostly dominating, with the Heat claiming a few titles now. So nothing has really changed with the NBA. The teams with good management and owners know how to win, regardless of their situations. These smaller market teams don’t need to sign Lebron James to compete, they need to run their orginizations better. How many times has Cleveland been in the lottery the past 10 years? Now think about how many of those picks have gone wrong. If Clevelnad hired the right people and made the right draft choices they’d be a competitor not a constant lottery team.Think about how many terrible free agent signings they’ve had. I use Cleveland as an example because they are one of the poorest run organizations in the NBA. The teams that will succeed need good ownership and managment. I dont care if they get Lebron James or not. So this thought proccess of the NBA is full of super teams needs to just go away. If smaller market teams want to compete they need better managment. There have been plenty of small market teams that had success without needing to have the LBJs of the world. The 2004 Pistons, or 2005&2007 Spurs are recent examples. Right now you have up and coming teams like Golden State, Portland, Phoenix, and even Charolette. So spare me the small market teams have no shot because superstars dont want to go there. Superstars dont want to go to teams like the Bucks, Kings, Cavs etc… because they are poorly run orginizations. The small market teams that have the right managment/ownership have proven to be successful already even if top FAs dont come to their team.

  8. money2long - Jun 24, 2014 at 1:33 PM

    Lebron should play with defensive abhor Dwight.
    Harden who will control offense with lebron on bench
    Pesty pg Beverly.
    And be surrounded with shooters in
    He’ll be a rocket if he knows what’s best.
    Ready for takeoff

    • money2long - Jun 24, 2014 at 1:34 PM

      Abhor. Haha
      Anchor *

  9. dontaco - Jun 24, 2014 at 1:40 PM

    No room for small markets? Youre right,cause the spurs didnt just win a title this season,or take the heat to the brink the season before. Or okc didnt play in the finals 3 yrs ago. Dude quit whining

  10. kb2408 - Jun 24, 2014 at 1:45 PM

    On BR it was just reported that LBJ is “intrigued” by the idea of playing with CP3 and for Doc. Sign and trade? Those bandwagon Heat “fans” will forget all about LBJ once Blake comes flying down from the rafters with his highlite reel dunks. After all, it’s really not about winning in Miami, it’s about the show.

    • loungefly74 - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:53 PM

      those “fans” would become Clipper fans…I tell ya, the worst kind of fan is one with no loyalty…puts them at a mentality with a little kid.

      • fanofthegame79 - Jun 24, 2014 at 4:02 PM

        Why do you feel like you get to dictate how someone watches their entertainment?? Do you realize that sports – all of this stuff – is entertainment? That’s like saying people from Arizona can only like David Spade as a comic.

        People watch what inspires them or moves them. If that’s LeBron or Kobe or Durant, then those people watch the Heat, Lakers, or the Thunder.

        It’s all about what a person wants to pay for and spend their time watching, not how you pigeon-hole them.

      • loungefly74 - Jun 24, 2014 at 4:14 PM

        comparing actors to athletes is a bad example. that makes no sense i dont even know where to start? hey, fine…do what you want but a majority of fans root for a team. not sure if you know, its kinda laughed at to be a fan of only a player…hence being called a bandwagon fan, girl, kid, etc…it’s true. can a fan like another player playing somewhere else? of course. i respect Lebron’s ability, TD’s stoic nature, KD’s focus…etc…but to say, “nah…i dont follow a team, i just like Lebron”…well, just dont expect too much respect from the community. especially if that person is poking fun or taking shots at a team…while he has none to stand for. it makes no sense. maybe basketball does that to people because its a star-driven league…but with team-based sports, no one does that. “ohh…i love tom brady”, says the chick. BUT…play on, playa.

    • crazyhandles05 - Jun 24, 2014 at 5:22 PM

      And they’ll remember him once they realize all blake can do is dunk.

  11. 00maltliquor - Jun 24, 2014 at 2:01 PM

    Here’s what SHOULD go down if I’m James……now stick with me, this is gonna be a doozy…

    Milwaukee should trade their #2 AND Brandon Knight while he still has a modicum of value, as mediocre as he is, to Cleveland and if need be, anyone not named Giannis, Henson or Sanders.

    Milwaukee take Wiggy with that #1.

    LeBron James goes to MILWAUKEE to be that lowly franchises savior!!!!!

    Here’s why this would work:
    James gets to start PG (yes) and line up with a young, freakishly athletic and super long group of

    PG- LeBron James
    SG- Andrew Wiggins
    SF- Giannis Antetokoumpo
    PF- John Henson
    C- Larry Sanders

    That group right there would immediately be the best in the East and would compete to be in the Finals for years to come. And the kicker…..


    His whole legacy would change for the best and even if he was to get just 1 ring with the Bucks, at least he did it with a team that no one ever gave a chance to! It would be the coolest, craziest thing ever!

    • loungefly74 - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:51 PM

      I love it, malt! The Bucks rise from the ashes! too bad only in the NFL is where every team can be relevant for the most part…concerning FA that is…

    • bougin89 - Jun 24, 2014 at 4:48 PM

      I like your style.

    • terrence1922 - Jun 26, 2014 at 10:00 AM

      You know what i think that might work. They would be a defensive juggernaught. Whose going to score 100+ consistently against that roster? Seriously!!

  12. infectorman - Jun 24, 2014 at 2:04 PM


    So long Miami, onto the next highest bidder.
    #no loyalty
    # the Ring count stops at 2 for Lebron/Heat/Lebron Fans
    # He was never yours to begin with!!!

    • fanofthegame79 - Jun 24, 2014 at 4:04 PM

      You are way too invested in this stuff. Do you feel better after pointing out the misery of others?

      • infectorman - Jun 24, 2014 at 5:02 PM

        misery is:
        not being able to pay your bills
        misery is struggling with addiction
        not being able to provide for your children
        not being able to find a job in Obama’s America
        misery is being ill, injured or otherwise incapacitated.

        misery is not found in the comings and goings of a multimillionaire basketball player.
        You could count on 1 hand the amount of times I’ve posted on the life and times of one LBJ, this season. You can’t say that about MANY other people on this site

        Invested, I am not. I’m not surprised either.

      • fanofthegame79 - Jun 24, 2014 at 6:26 PM

        Actually, you are invested: you invested your time, thoughts, and energy in putting down others. You left the realm of “multimillionaire basketball players” when you included “Heat/LeBron fans” and “He was never yours to begin with”.

  13. infectorman - Jun 24, 2014 at 2:09 PM

    # will never be as good as MJ

    (forgot one)

    • sportsfan18 - Jun 24, 2014 at 5:23 PM

      MJ is the GOAT

  14. phillyguyindc - Jun 24, 2014 at 2:48 PM

    He’s trying to make the other two opt out so they can’t resign and take up all the salary cap. Wade will opt in regardless.. Will Bosh wait and see what Bron does, or just take the money? I don’t think anyone has capability to sign James and Bosh.

  15. jacobk621 - Jun 24, 2014 at 2:53 PM

    What are you smoking or taking @00maltliquor ?? Bwahwahwahwah !!!

    • 00maltliquor - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:19 PM


  16. haaaaasoooooo - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:17 PM

    Malt liquor knows what he is talking about! LBJ to Milwaukee! Write it down in permanent ink!!!

  17. 5xchamp24 - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:35 PM

    The way LB and wade looked every time the media showed them together, It looked like they were boyfriend and girlfriend. They got together because they were friends. They built an even closer relationship since then and won 2 chips. There’s no way LB is gonna up and leave Wade, bad knees or not. Can’t see it happening.

    • loungefly74 - Jun 24, 2014 at 3:47 PM

      yeah, i agree…no way he abandons Wade…

  18. cameltoehoe - Jun 24, 2014 at 4:27 PM

    People act like the Clippers’ internal problems are a distant memory. It is, in fact the teams reality that the Sterling mess will continue to fester.

    Clip fans should come to the realization that LA (ClipperNation side, at the very least) is no longer a desirable FA destination. You had your run for a good 3 years. Ultimately, any FA that signs with the Clips after knowing full well of their (still present) racist owner’s views, is just asking for criticism; and deservedly so.

  19. mvp43 - Jun 24, 2014 at 4:36 PM

    Milwaukee just sold for $500 mil. Ownership should reach out to him and give him a percentage of the team. He has 5 great years left for sure with an opportunity to play with either Parker or Wiggins.

    • mvp43 - Jun 24, 2014 at 5:22 PM

      And…………. Ray Allen can join him and retire in Miwaukee as it should be.

  20. twinfan24 - Jun 24, 2014 at 6:01 PM

    If championships are TRULY more important than money, he could take the veteran minimum or mid-level exception and sign with a team that is already really good, but against the cap. Now, I can’t see him taking the bruise to the ego of taking that little money. But, when you are likely already making over $50 million (per Forbes) in endorsements, does the extra $20 million in salary really make that much difference to your standard of living? If rings really meant more, he could make it more likely and still have way more money than anyone should need. Remember, he will likely still make endorsement money into retirement from the game, so it isn’t like his funds will just dry up after he retires from the court, especially if he added 2 or 3 more rings.

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