Cleveland, OH, United States (4E Sports) – The Cleveland Cavaliers believe they convince free-agent superstar LeBron James to leave the Miami Heat and return to their fold after a bitter parting four years ago.
According to sources, the four-time MVP is increasingly considering the Cavaliers as an option as he moves into the final stages of deciding which team to sign his next contract with.
There is no firm indication that James will leave Miami after two championships but a big key to his decision is the face-to-face meeting with Heat president Pat Riley this week.
Sources close to James said the superstar wants to hear Riley’s plans for the Heat’s roster before making his decision.
However, James’ agent, Rich Paul, has already sat down with Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert in what is regarded as the first formal step in the healing process after the superstar left Cleveland in 2010.
Sources say that the Cavs’ pitch made to Paul last week revolves around Kyrie Irving and the other young prospects they have in addition to the numerous options Cleveland possesses to add to the roster over the next year.
The Cavs believe they have made the greatest move so far this summer: persuading Irving to sign a five-year maximum contract extension in the first few hours of free agency.
With No. 1 overall pick Andrew Wiggins under control for the next five seasons as well, the Cavs are pitching youth and roster stability to James, who played on one of the oldest teams in the league last season.
The team also potentially will own three first-round picks in the 2015 draft. The Cavs will have their own pick, the Memphis Grizzlies’ pick if it falls between Nos. 6 and 14 and the Heat’s pick if they fall outside the top 10.
However, the Cavs currently don’t have the cap space to sign James to the $20.7 million maximum contract he is looking for but could create space by waiving some players on non-guaranteed deals.