Friday, August 12, 2016

The Raven Report 8.12.16: LeBron James Re-Signs With The Cavs

By Raven Williams, @nevaRWilliams

On Thursday, the Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James eased many concerns around the city of Cleveland and the NBA, in general as LeBron James agreed to a 3-year, $100 million contract.

James, 31, for the first time in his 13 year career will become the highest paid player in the league in the first year of his deal, making $31 million. In 2017-18, LeBron will top out at $33 million, and as much as $35 million in 2018-19, which will once again make him the highest paid player for a single season in NBA league history. It will slightly top the deal that the Chicago Bulls gave to Michael Jordan in the 1997-98 season.

James' deal will officially be signed next week when he returns home for his annual LeBron James Family Foundation charity event.

ESPN sources have said that the third year of the deal will be a player option. The Cavs payroll for the 2016-17 season should once again be the highest payroll in the league.

The three-year deal actually came as a bit of a shock to many fans and even some media members, who grew used LeBron signing one-year contracts, to gain leverage every offseason. Some even believed, or still believe, that LeBron would continue to do one-year deals to keep the pressure on Cavs' owner Dan Gilbert to keep some sort of grudge going for the infamous letter from 2010.

Grow up. Every else has.

At the end of the above video, posted on Uninterrupted, James pleas for the Cavaliers to get the band back together and get J.R. Smith's contract done. I feel like this will become a fairly quick process, and the family, the band, the TEAM will be whole once again.

As for the future, not having to worry about a LeBron contract situation, or Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love for that matter, is VERY comforting for Cavaliers fans. As the salary cap increases every year, it'll be nice knowing that the key pieces are already locked into a contract, which should make things easier and more comforting for GM David Griffin as he adds and replaces role players year in and year out. LeBron being here, along with Kyrie Irving, SHOULD be very appealing to free agents who want a shot to be on a winning team and getting to the NBA Finals, while learning from one of the greatest players the NBA has ever seen in James. I love the idea of Kyrie continuing to be groomed by one of the games best. So when LeBron moves on, Irving will be able to take over and be the focal point, while continuing to grow into one of the most clutch and dominant players in the league, while the Cavaliers front office puts pieces around the core to keep this winning train going.

Things are different now. Things have changed. #NewCleveland

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