2018 and Beyond

Over 20 teams have reportedly inquired about trading for Cleveland Cavaliers star point guard, Kyrie Irving. The notion of trading a 25-year old superstar, coming off a season in which he averaged 25 points and 6 assists would have been crazy eight weeks ago, but with news of a strained relationship between Irving and Cavs deity LeBron James leaking out – the move seems imminent.

What the Cavs net in return for Irving is going to be largely contingent on LeBron. Speculation has heated up in the past week that LeBron is going to leave Cleveland as a free agent in 2018. If the Cavs feel LeBron is leaving, they most likely try to pick up draft picks and young talent in return for Irving. If the front office thinks LeBron is going to stay beyond 2018, they try to acquire veteran talent.

The next obvious question is: if LeBron leaves, where will he go?

According to sportsbettingdime.com, if LeBron James becomes a free agent next year, odds that he’ll sign with the LA Lakers is set at 3/1

The Lakers make sense, with Paul George and Russell Westbrook also linked to them in 2018.

If these pieces fall into place, the balance of the Western Conference could dramatically shift.