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Bobby Marks of ESPN says when it comes to the NBA draft, with LeBron James not having to inform the Cleveland Cavaliers if he is accepting or declining his $35.6 million player option until June 29, general manager Koby Altman must do whatever he can to select a good fit for his squad.
“I think you’re looking at two different timelines here,” he said on an appearance on SportsCenter. “We have the draft, which is 10 days away, and free agency, that’s three weeks from now.”
Marks said the Cavaliers are already forging ahead. Cleveland owns the eighth overall selection in the draft, which will be held June 21. James does not have to inform the Cavaliers of his decision on his $35.6 million player option until June 29.
“They’ve already transitioned into draft workouts when they brought in Alabama’s Collin Sexton (on Saturday) and for Koby Altman, their general manager, it’s going to be best-available. Even with the uncertainly of LeBron James. So if that is Collin Sexton or maybe Michael Porter Jr. from Missouri, that is going to be the direction of the organization.
“But keep in mind, that draft pick can be traded once its selected leading up to free agency so if there is a scenario where James decides to come back, that pick could be in play.”
In regards to James’ upcoming free agency, three teams stand head and shoulders above all others when it comes to landing the services of the 33-year-old superstar, who just led the Cleveland Cavaliers to a fourth consecutive NBA Finals, his eighth straight appearance, according to Marks — the Cavaliers, the Los Angeles Lakers and the Philadelphia 76ers.