The NBA 2017–2018 regular season is winding down to a wild finish, as teams continue to fight for a playoff spot. Though the trade deadline has long been over, a new rumor surrounding the deal that involved Kyrie Irving and Isaiah Thomas surfaced, revealing an interesting plot.
According to ESPN's Dave McMenamin and Brian Windhorst, Cleveland Cavaliers superstar LeBron James was not a happy camper with regards to how the Irving-Thomas deal panned out. The ESPN report said that James was frustrated at the Cavaliers organization's inability to snag more valuable assets from the trade with the Celtics. Moreover, James was reportedly skeptical of the deal, noting the hip injury sustained by Thomas.
McMenamin and Windhorst said that sources close to the four-time league MVP shared that James was disappointed at the front office's reworking of the deal once the severity of Thomas' injury became more evident as the season progressed. A report from NESN pointed that James' dismay for the whole trade ordeal may have been justified, considering Thomas' brief and forgettable stay with the Cavaliers.
The Cavaliers are having a rollercoaster season with a 38–28 win-loss record, enough to keep them in fourth place in the Eastern Conference. With the team struggling, talks of James leaving the team in the offseason are growing louder and louder.
A few days before the Cavaliers faced the LA Lakers and the LA Clippers in Los Angeles last weekend, a "super fan" put up a billboard in LA, clad in purple and gold, with the hashtag "#LABron," as well as the message, "Cleveland and Philly, You Can't Compete with L.A."
NBC Los Angeles noted that the billboard was paid for by Jacob Emrani, a personal injury lawyer who is an avid fan of the LA Lakers. Emrani reportedly paid for a total of four billboards, with the others saying, "FORGET THE PROCESS, WE WIN BANNERS," which is a swipe at the billboard pitch from Philadelphia 76ers fans.
Emrani said that James could very well "cement his legacy" if he chooses to join the Lakers and help the struggling franchise win an NBA championship.