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#pounditWednesday, June 19, 2024

Reports: LeBron James and Dan Gilbert at odds

Dan Gilbert

The Cleveland Cavaliers often have drama and down times during the regular season, but this year feels different. The team is performing poorly, Kevin Love is injured, Isaiah Thomas isn’t at full strength, and other teams in the East (namely Boston) are stronger. Rather than trying to make this year’s team as strong and competitive as possible, the Cavs appear to be bridging for the future and anticipating the loss of LeBron James in free agency. Ironically, they don’t seem to realize that by preparing for the future, they’re pushing him out the door.

But one interesting storyline that’s emerged of late is that the Cavaliers have become a situation of LeBron James vs. team owner Dan Gilbert. Gilbert didn’t bring back GM David Griffin and instead Koby Altman is the new GM, but more and more, reports are saying it’s Gilbert controlling the team’s front office.

ESPN’s Brian Windhorst wrote this over the weekend in an article after the Cavs’ blowout loss to the Rockets:

“This is all a whirlwind around LeBron James vs. the Cavs’ front office, which is to say it’s about James vs. owner Dan Gilbert.”

In an appearance on the Lowe Post podcast Monday, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski also described Gilbert and James as clashing.

“I think the LeBron James dynamic with Dan Gilbert issues sort of set the tone in the organization for others to square off. When the two most powerful people in the organization (do it), I think it opens the door for others to have that. The best player and the owner, that sets a tone. I think it only serves to amplify the other issues there. You have a lot of taking of sides, you have a lot of cliques.”

On top of Windhorst and Wojnarowski, Cleveland media personality Will Burge ripped Gilbert for running the team’s front office and pushing James out the door.

He also said of Gilbert, “the guy has a puppet as a GM who has zero power. Dans calling all the shots on the basketball side now. Good luck w that.”

None of this comes as a surprise. Gilbert completely lucked into James, kicked him on the way out the door, lucked into getting him back, and is now doing his best to kick him back out the door. Gilbert is an egomaniac and is ruining a team that has become good thanks to LeBron, not him.

H/T Black Sports Online

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