Lebron James to Dallas Mavericks described as financial ‘fairy-tale’ by NBA insider

While it seems like NBA superstars can force their way to any team they want, a league insider says Lebron James somehow finding his way to the Dallas Mavericks is pure fantasy.

Headlines were made on Monday when it was reported that Kyrie Irving had reached out to former Cleveland Cavaliers teammate Lebron James to gauge his interest in a new team-up. However, while rumors have circulated for months that the duo that won Cleveland’s lone championship could reunite in Los Angeles, Irving allegedly wants to see James join him in Dallas.

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Lebron James infamously helped to form a dominant trio with pals Chris Bosh and Dwayne Wade in Miami during the previous decade, and it seems Irving is hoping for a new “big three” with James and Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic.

After Irving and Kevin Durant, both forced their way out of Brooklyn in February it seems like superstars getting their way is as possible as ever. However, on Monday NBA insider Marc Stein explained the multiple reasons why Lebron James forcing his way to Dallas is highly unlikely.

NBA insider explains why Lebron James going to Dallas Mavericks a pipe dream

lebron james

For starters, all indications are that the 10-time All-Star is looking for close to max money in NBA free agency. For James to join him in Texas, he would need to take a significant pay cut which doesn’t jive with Irving’s history in the league. Being asked to take less money was part of why he asked for a trade from the Nets in February.

Then there is the fact that Lebron James is owed $46.9 million next season and holds a $50.6 million player option for 2024-2025. The Dallas Mavericks don’t have the kind of trade assets that would interest a rival team like the Los Angeles Lakers to make such a bold trade or the cap space to take on his contract.

This means James would need to ask for a contract buyout, and also take less to leave what seems like a favorable situation in LA, and purposefully get less time with his son Bronny who recently committed to play for USC.

The most interesting point Stein made in his Monday newsletter on the story is the fact that forming “big threes” is going to get far more difficult than in years past.

“The league’s new collective bargaining agreement which takes hold June 30 will make forming Big Threes anywhere almost impossible given all the forthcoming roster-building restrictions on NBA teams that spend the most. It will be hard enough for teams to lock in optimal high-dollar duos and build depth around them without going more than $17.5 million past the luxury-tax line. Teams that stray into that second apron territory will be prevented from taking back more salary in trades than they send out … from aggregating player salaries to take in more salary … from adding cash to trades … ‘It’s basically a hard cap,’ one league source said Monday.”

– Marc Stein

Los Angeles Lakers fans shouldn’t be too worried about Lebron James trying to leave the team since such a move seems like a high-level pipe dream at this point in NBA history.

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