LeBron Is On The Move, But Where To Next?

LeBron Is On The Move, But Where To Next?

The King is on the move but where will he dock his ship?

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Since the Cleveland Cavaliers traded Kyrie Irving to the Boston Celtics this past summer, the entire NBA community and fanbase have been asking where LeBron James should end up. The King from Akron, Ohio has been leaving hints for everyone all year round that he's ready to leave Cleveland. James has fulfilled his promise to the city by bringing home a championship in 2015, and now he has nothing holding him back. It is a fair assumption that every single team in the league is at least thinking about how they can acquire LeBron James. But here are the few that are the most possible outcomes.

1. Los Angeles Lakers

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Easily the most likely and popular destination for James. The Lakers have the cap space to offer him a max deal and still have some left over to add a second superstar caliber player. And that second superstar player is assumed to be Los Angeles native Paul George. The Lakers also posses a couple of intriguing young players such as Lonzo Ball, Julius Randle, Kyle Kuzma and Brandon Ingram. Each of those players is under 24 years old so they would all revel in the addition of James, to teach them how to be winners. LA is also the most realistic landing spot in terms of his personal life.

James and his family spend the offseason in Los Angeles and have been rumored to be looking at schools for his kids. It would also be a location where he could enhance his more creative interests. James has already been in a couple of movies and is also looking to grow his platform Uninterrupted and there would be no other place better to do that than Hollywood. Yes, the Lakers have recently been the laughing stock of the entire league. But if anyone can lead them back to the "showtime Lakers" days it's LeBron.

2. Philadelphia 76ers

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Other than the Lakers, Philadelphia has been deemed the second most likely destination. The 76ers are coming off their first winning season in six years, and their first 50 win season since 2000. Leading the way for Philly are two rising stars in Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid. There is no question that the Lakers may have more young talent in terms of quantity, but the 76ers easily have the two best players. James wouldn't need to put the entire team on his back like in years past, instead, he can maybe even play off the ball with Simmons at the point. This strategy has proven to work in the past for LeBron has won titles while splitting touches with other ball handlers like Dwyane Wade and Kyrie Irving. But the two stars sharing a backcourt could also be their downfall.

James is an average three-point shooter and Simmons is one of the worst perimeter shooters in the league, so neither would truly be able to space the floor. The Sixers also do not have a whole lot of shooting on their roster in general. In order for them to even acquire LeBron, Philly would almost certainly have to part ways with an impending free agent and top three-point shooter JJ Redick. Embiid is also a constant health risk, as he still hasn't played more than 70 games in a regular season. But the potential of Embiid and Simmons alone may be worth the risk.

3. Houston Rockets

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Last year the Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey pulled off one of the biggest blockbuster trades in years when he acquired Chris Paul. Who's to say he won't do the same this year? The only untouchable players on the Rockets are Paul and James Harden. Everyone else is pretty much expendable and can be easily replaced. In order for James to end up in Houston, there would most likely need to part ways with a significant amount of their roster. That would mean parting ways with core role players like Clint Cappella, Trevor Ariza or maybe even six men of the year winner Eric Gordon. But with those three players assembled it may be worth it.

There would also be no shortage of free agents looking to sign for the league minimum salary, in order to join Houston's big three. Although Morey is the GM, the one who will be pulling the strings of this deal is Chris Paul. Paul is very good friends with LeBron hence the banana boat vacation. The chemistry between the two is unquestioned and if Harden can successfully adjust to another superstar acquisition, then Houston may pose a real threat to the Golden State Warriors.

4. San Antonio Spurs

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Another situation where trades will need to be involved, the Spurs are still looking to add more talent. Rumors have been traveling around all season long about how Kawhi Leonard wants out of San Antonio because of the lack of talent around him. Well, I believe that adding the best player in the league would likely put a stop to those kinds of thoughts. James has also been devoid of a hall of fame coach for his entire career. Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant had Phil Jackson, Magic Johnson had Pat Riley, and if James does end up with the Spurs he would have Greg Popovich. Popovich has been heralded as the best coach in the league for nearly two decades.

He's also one of the most outspoken coaches in the league in terms of what is going on in the world and shares a lot of similar opinions to LeBron. In San Antonio, Popovich can enhance Jame's basketball abilities and also join together on off the court matters. The tandem of James and Leonard would also be one of the most physically intimidating pairs in the league. Both are gritty players on both sides of the ball, but Leonards youth can play a big part. He is definitely a better defender than James so he would carry more of the load on defense where LeBron is starting to struggle.

5. Phoenix Suns

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This one is a long shot. It's a team that has never been brought up in any of the conversations but has a lot of intriguing assets. The Phoenix Suns have been one of the most irrelevant teams in all of basketball as they haven't made the playoffs since 2009 and have won less than 25 games each of the last three seasons. But they're stretch of horrific basketball has landed them the number one pick in the draft his year which would be the main selling point for LeBron. The biggest issue the Cavaliers had this season is that their roster was old and tired. The two teams are exact opposites when it comes to that criticism. The Sun's average age of their roster is 24 years which is the second youngest in the league.

The Cavs average age is 29.5 years old, which is the oldest. But what kind of talent do these young guns have to offer? Well, besides the first pick of this years draft, Phoenix has developed potential all-star Devin Booker into an offensive juggernaut. Along with Booker is last years first round pick and defensive stopper Josh Jackson, athletic stretch four Marquess Chriss, and trade deadline acquisition Elfrid Payton who really blossomed after the deal. The Suns already have more than enough cap space to sign James. It's another situation where he will have to put his trust into the development of the youngsters.
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To The Coach Who Ruined The Game For Me

We can't blame you completely, but no one has ever stood up to you before.
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I know you never gave it a second thought, the idea that you're the reason I and many others, never went any farther in our athletic careers.

I know you didn’t sincerely care about our mental health, as long as we were physically healthy and our bodies were working enough to play. It’s obvious your calling wasn’t coaching and you weren’t meant to work with young adults, some who look to you as a parent figure or a confidant.

I also know that if we were to express our concerns about the empty feeling we began to feel when we stepped onto the court, you wouldn’t have taken the conversation seriously because it wasn’t your problem.

I know we can't blame you completely, no one has ever stood up to you before. No one said anything when girls would spend their time in the locker room crying because of something that was said or when half the team considered quitting because it was just too much.

We can't get mad at the obvious favoritism because that’s how sports are played.

Politics plays a huge role and if you want playing time, you have to know who to befriend. We CAN get mad at the obvious mistreatment, the empty threats, the verbal abuse, “it's not what you say, its how you say it.”

We can get mad because a sport that we loved so deeply and had such passion for, was taken away from us single-handedly by an adult who does not care. I know a paycheck meant more to you than our wellbeing, and I know in a few years you probably won’t even remember who we are, but we will always remember.

We will remember how excited we used to get on game days and how passionate we were when we played. How we wanted to continue on with our athletic careers to the next level when playing was actually fun. We will also always remember the sly remarks, the obvious dislike from the one person who was supposed to support and encourage us.

We will always remember the day things began to change and our love for the game started to fade.

I hope that one day, for the sake of the young athletes who still have a passion for what they do, you change.

I hope those same athletes walk into practice excited for the day, to get better and improve, instead of walking in with anxiety and worrying about how much trouble they would get into that day. I hope those athletes play their game and don’t hold back when doing it, instead of playing safe, too afraid to get pulled and benched the rest of the season.

I hope they form an incredible bond with you, the kind of bond they tell their future children about, “That’s the coach who made a difference for me when I was growing up, she’s the reason I continued to play.”

I don’t blame you for everything that happened, we all made choices. I just hope that one day, you realize that what you're doing isn’t working. I hope you realize that before any more athletes get to the point of hating the game they once loved.

To the coach that ruined the game for me, I hope you change.

Cover Image Credit: Author's photo

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The Top 10 Quarterback-Wide Receiver Combos In The NFL

In a passing league, a quarterback runs the show on offense, and his favorite wide-receiver is his reliable safety blanket.

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The NFL has seen great quarterbacks and great wide receivers. When a combination of a great quarterback and wide receiver are on one team, an offense can become very dangerous. Certain teams and their fans have been fortunate enough to see outstanding duos. This list includes record breakers, Super Bowl MVPs, and Hall of Famers

10. Stabler to Biletnikoff

Ken Stabler and Fred Biletnikoff were typical Oakland Raiders. Rule breaking characters who only cared about winning. The Raiders' victory in Super Bowl XI was the peak of the Raiders dominance of the 70s. MVP Biletnikoff reflected on their years in Oakland and his friendship with Stabler.

9. Namath to Maynard

In the 60s Broadway Joe Namath captivated football fans in the American Football League. He and Don Maynard were bombs away on the field. In 1968 the Jets upset the Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III. If it was not for Namath and Maynard, the Jets might not have been in the big game.

8. Staubach to Pearson

Roger Staubach and Drew Pearson made it on the map when Staubach hit Pearson for the first Hail Mary touchdown. They won Super Bowl XII with the Cowboys in 1977 and played in 3 Super Bowls all together in the 70s. Pearson has been overlooked by the Hall of Fame. He deserves to be in Canton along with his quarterback.

7. Brady to Edelman

For the past decade, Tom Brady and Julian Edelman have tormented secondaries and defensive coordinators. They just won their 3rd Super Bowl together and each has left their mark on the NFL. Brady's best receiver in his career may have been Hall of Famer Randy Moss, but Edelman has been the most reliable weapon for the Patriots.

6. Kelly to Reed

The K-Gun offense was perfect for Bills quarterback Jim Kelly. The fast-paced, no-huddle offense was a headache for defenses. Andre Reed was the perfect deep threat for Kelly. The Bills went to 4 straight Super Bowls in the early 90s, something that has not been done before or since. Kelly and Reed are both Hall of Famers despite not winning the Super Bowl.

5. Aikman to Irvin

Troy Aikman and Michael Irvin won three Super Bowls together in Dallas. In their first Aikman hit Irvin for two touchdowns in an MVP performance by Aikman. The Dallas dynasty of the early 90s would not have been possible without this duo.

4. Unitas to Berry

Johnny Unitas and Raymond Berry were the best at their positions in their time. The prolific combination of these two legends brought the Colts back to back championships in the late 50s. Their on the field chemistry started before game days. Unitas and Berry would stay after practice and run pass patterns to prepare for Sunday afternoons in Baltimore.

3. Montana to Rice

Jerry Rice entered the league in 1985. By then Joe Montana was a two time Super Bowl champion and two time Super Bowl MVP. Montana and Rice would lead the 49ers to two Super Bowls in the late 80s. Each would win a Super Bowl MVP and San Francisco became the team of the 80s.

2. Young to Rice

By the Early 90s, Jerry Rice had been established as one of, if not, the best wide receiver in NFL history. When injuries led to Joe Montana being traded from the 49ers Steve Young took over the offense. During the transition, Rice would practice catching passes from a left-handed ball boy on the 49ers. Young and Rice would lead the 49ers to three straight NFC championship appearances and a victory in Super Bowl XXIX.

1. Manning to Harrison

Peyton Manning's career makes a compelling argument for him as the best quarterback of his generation. Marvin Harrison may have been the best wide receiver of the 2000s. The fact that they were on the same team was like the stars aligning. Manning and Harrison combined for 12,766 yards and 112 touchdowns - two records that may never be broken. Together, they led the Indianapolis Colts to the Super Bowl in 2006.

The importance of a good quarterback-receiver duo cannot be understated. The better the chemistry is between the two, the better the offense will run. All of these duos brought different things to the table. But they all caused headaches for opposing secondaries.

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