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LeBron’s future in Cleveland is uncertain

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Speculation is building about where LeBron James may end up if he leaves.

NBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State Warriors Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

One of the best things about the Cleveland Cavaliers winning the championship last season was that it meant a dramatic reduction of doomsday scenarios being discussed. There was very little talk of LeBron James leaving, Kevin Love being traded, or anything else that would promote the development of grey hairs for fans.

According to Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical, it isn’t a forgone conclusion that LeBron will re-sign with the Cavaliers after next season.

Transcribed by CBS Sports:

Cleveland's unique in that they're almost again on a one year plan. Because LeBron's free agency comes up again next year. Not only is there no guarantee he's coming back I'm not sure there's an expectation he's re-signing there. I think they feel, within Cleveland and around the league, they feel that he's very much in play to leave again and likely head out west to one of the two L.A. teams. The Lakers could very well be a target. The possibility of Miami again based on what that team looks like. Would Dwyane Wade go back there? I think the focus, a lot of LeBron's business interest, his hollywood aspirations, his media ventures are based out there.

I think it’s important to note that this appears to be speculation, rather than a report. It’s obvious that LeBron has aspirations for his post playing career that could take him to Los Angeles, and I believe that has been blended into people’s projections for how he will end his playing career.

It’s also important to note that Wojnarowski hasn’t typically broken LeBron news in the past. As evidenced by his report a week before “The Decision”:

The Chicago Bulls are still the team to beat, with Cleveland a close second and New Jersey the looming wild card.

Or for from four days before “The Decision”:

He needed the threat of leaving [Cleveland], even if there was never truly the intent.

That being said, I think it’s foolish to believe anybody has a firm grip on where LeBron is at. He has not been afraid to make unpopular decisions in the past, and unpredictability has been one of his signature traits. However going to either L.A. team would likely just mean a loss to the Warriors in the earlier rounds and it’s nearly impossible to picture him going back to Miami. While he was able to get past his issues with Dan Gilbert, that was mostly due to the lure of coming back home to Ohio. An advantage Pat Riley doesn’t have.