Gilbert comments on LeBron’s future

Tired of answering questions about LeBron James’ future in Cleveland, Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert told reporters Thursday, “We hope (James is) here for his whole career and we’re going to do what we can to make that happen. We’re very optimistic.” Gilbert also said that he’s confused by all the rumors, adding, “You don’t hear people say, ‘When is Carmelo (Anthony) leaving Denver? Or when is Dwyane Wade leaving Miami?’ It seems to be, ‘What is going to happen with LeBron?'” That’s because Carmelo and Wade aren’t LeBron, and the Nuggets and Heat aren’t the Cavaliers. If the Cavs ever lost James, the franchise would collapse. Denver and Miami, on the other hand, would eventually recover from losing ‘Melo and Wade.

Maybe Gilbert wasn’t paying attention to the Cavs before LeBron fell into their laps. Nobody gave a crap about the team (in Cleveland or anywhere else), nobody went to any of the games, nobody bought any merchandise. The Cavaliers may very well have been the sorriest franchise in the NBA throughout the ’90s and, if not for LeBron, they probably would be making an inspired run for this decade’s crown.

So what would happen if, when he’s first eligible for free agency, James bolts for LA or New York or Chicago? Not only would the Cavaliers plummet back to the bottom of the basketball world, but the disappointment over losing LeBron would be so great that the franchise would probably be in even worse shape than it was before he was drafted. It’d be like having the hottest girl in school ask you to prom only to get dumped the night before. Would you still go to the dance? I know I wouldn’t, not after a letdown like that.

You think anybody will come to the Gund after losing LeBron James? Hell no. LeBron is the franchise, pure and simple, and if he goes the franchise will sink.

So Cavs fans better hope that Gilbert’s making all the right moves, and that he fully recognizes how imperative it is for him to keep James in Cleveland for a long, long time. Of course, any moron can see just how important a guy like LeBron James would be to his team, so now you’ve got to question whether or not the decisions Gilbert’s made since taking over will ultimately help keep LeBron in the wine and gold.

At least until he brings a championship or two to Cleveland, anyway.

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