Report: LeBron James’ Decision May Truly be Up in the Air

Common logic seems to suggest that LeBron James will return to the Miami Heat in order to help that team earn a fifth consecutive Eastern Conference championship. 

The thought process has now turned to the idea that James will receive a max-deal with Miami, while both Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh accept less in order to help the Heat improve from a season ago. And that makes a ton of sense.

But what if it isn’t that simple?

Despite confidence from those in Miami that James will return, that’s not a foregone conclusion at this point. He doesn’t need to “settle” for a long-term contract and could easily go back to free agency next July…even if he decides to re-sign with Miami.

Being the best basketball player on Earth enables James to go about free agency a bit differently than others. He doesn’t need to take the money now with the idea that his value and/or game might diminish in the next year or two. Instead, he can run off a string of shorter-term deals with the Heat (or another team), much like Michael Jordan did during the latter days of his career.

The skeptic in most of us believes that James isn’t 100 percent sold on the direction of the Heat and needs to be given the pitch by team president Pat Riley. If the selection of Shabazz Napier, who James loves, is any indication, Miami may very well be willing to cater to the two-time NBA champion.

Will that be enough or does James have some other options out there that might be more enticing? Maybe a return to Cleveland with that young team and a couple other quality veteran additions. What about the idea of playing with Stephen Curry and Kevin Love in Golden State or Chris Paul and Blake Griffin in Los Angeles?

These are all options that James promises to think about as this process gets going. But if you’re thinking for one second that he’s a lock to return to the Heat, think again.

Photo: Total Sports Live