Sixers Claim LeBron James ‘Strongly’ Considered Signing With Team Before Choosing Lakers
Sixers coach and interim general manager Brett Brown and managing partner Josh Harris revealed how the team’s encounter with Rich Paul, James’ agent, went.
“I think they considered us very strongly,” Harris stated of James’ team at the Las Vegas Summer League on Monday. “I think he — I would be speculating on how he makes his decisions, and I don’t want to do that — but I think that they were really serious [about Philadelphia]. The fact that they took the meeting with us was something that they didn’t view lightly, so I think that they were very serious about it.”
James, 33, signed a four-year deal with the Lakers on July 1, the first day of NBA free agency. The former Cleveland Cavaliers and Miami Heat star forward had said family considerations would be a key factor in his decision on which team to play next. James has two homes in Los Angeles, according to ESPN. The Lakers also recently acquired Lance Stephenson and Rajon Rondo. James will join a squad filled with young stars who have potential, like Lonzo Ball, Kyle Kuzma and Brandon Ingram.
The Sixers, meanwhile, have reached deals to reunite with J.J. Reddick and Amir Johnson in free agency, according to ESPN. The team is also looking to bring on Wilson Chandler, and Philadelphia has been rumored to sign former San Antonio Spurs star Kawhi Leonard as well via a possible trade.
Philadelphia currently boats talented youngsters like Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid and Markelle Fultz. The 76ers also continue to look for a new GM to succeed Bryan Colangelo, who resigned last month following an investigation into his alleged ties to multiple unauthorized Twitter accounts that said damaging things about some of Philadelphia’s players and that violated NBA rules.
The 76ers finished this past season 52-30 and third in the Eastern Conference. They reached the second round of the playoffs before losing 4-1 to the Boston Celtics.