Just as there was talk about LeBron James returning to Cleveland while he was still in Miami, speculation is ramping up that James again could leave Cleveland at the end of the 2017-18 season.
And apparently they're not doing a very good job.
According to Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today, James is frustrated and concerned by Cleveland's offseason efforts this summer. Via Zillgitt:
Expecting an aggressive offseason approach that would close the gap on the champion Golden State Warriors, James soon found his anticipation and optimism diminished after Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert dismantled the front office, declining days before the draft and free agency to bring back general manager David Griffin and vice president of basketball operations Trent Redden.
Gilbert's decision left the Cavs without the franchise's top two front-office execs at a critical time, and it left James frustrated and concerned about the team's ability to put together a roster that can better compete with Golden State, the person with direct knowledge of James' thinking told USA TODAY Sports. The person was not authorized to speak publicly and requested anonymity.
Further exacerbating James' frustration is the Cavs were close to making a deal for then-Chicago Bulls All-Star Jimmy Butler the day Gilbert decided to mutually part ways with Griffin and Redden, two people familiar with negotiations told USA TODAY Sports. They requested anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly on the negotiations.
While the Rockets added Chris Paul, the Timberwolves added Butler and the Thunder added George, the Cavs have yet to make a move that brings them closer to beating a re-loaded Warriors team should they reach the Finals for a fourth consecutive season. If they are going to make a run at another championship, the Cavs and James will need to get on the same page.