While I read, listen and watch all of this hoopla about the Cleveland Cavaliers having utmost hopes and beliefs that LeBron James is listening to their pitch, one phrase comes to mind: Howdy-freaking-do! I happen to work in the sales industry and I get hundreds of people who will listen to the pitch, but in the end, the pitch means jack-squat. Anyone, and I do mean ANYONE, in sales will tell you it is all about the close.
I might get someone to listen to the entire pitch and have them tell me: “I want to look it over.” More than you’d think, it is either A.) they aren’t interested and they just didn’t want to be rude, B.) they love the attention or C.) it was a lonely old lady who just wanted someone to talk to.
What I am trying to say is the pitch isn’t even half the battle, and even after days, weeks and months of courting, soothing, arguing and compromising, the close doesn’t happen. Take it easy ESPN and Cleveland; we haven’t gotten anywhere yet.
However, something that the “World Wide Leader in Sports” mentioned in relation to this story is the salary cap issue. Cleveland does not have the space and must trade a few players to make the space. The anchor and analyst discussed what players the Cavs might trade. Names such as Anderson Varejao, Anthony Bennett and Dion Waiters were mentioned, but one name made a light-bulb go off in my head: Andrew Wiggins. When Wiggins was mentioned as a possible playing card, I developed a crazy thought: a sign-and-trade.
Is it possible that Pat Riley would swallow his pride, sign James and trade him to Cleveland for the four previously mentioned players? Varejao is a wannabe Joakim Noah, but you have to love his energy. No one knows whether Bennett is cut out for the NBA, but then again, Riley is the best for determining that. Waiters is an emerging two-guard with noticeable abilities to play point, and finally there is Wiggins, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2014 draft. That is quite the offer and somewhat enticing. There are other problems that need to be worked out amongst the trade as the Miami Heat don’t have much to work with, but if Cleveland wants the King that badly, they might have to make it work.
This is somewhat of a shot-in-the-dark idea, but if James does really want to return to his hometown, you know Riley won’t make it simple. The Heat also won’t want to be left empty-handed. There are talented pieces on the roster that the Cavs have to work with in terms of negotiating, but as many are saying, James controls the entire situation.
The question is, is he or anyone else smarter or gutsier than Riley? The jury is currently deliberating on the matter, but a ruling is expected in the next few weeks. You can count on this: Riley will think of something.
Shane Phillips is an NBA Writer for RantSports.com. Follow Shane on Twitter @ShaneRantSports, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google. You can also email Shane at ShaneRantNBA@gmail.com.