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And Another Thing

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You might think James would be out of his mind to choose a remainder-bin franchise over one that's been to four NBA Finals in a row, but that was yesterday.

LeBron: A few prodigal thoughts

I hear the words of Ebenezer Scrooge now, as word comes down that LeBron James' agent has officially begun the courtship process with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Remember that scene at the Exchange? The one in which Scrooge keeps lowering the price for his corn, and his potential buyers blurt out, "But that's not fair!"

"No," Scrooge replies. "But it's business."

And so we come back to LeBron, the Cavs and, more to the point, Cavs owner Dan Gilbert.

You and I and the guy down the street no doubt think LeBron would be crazy to come back to Cleveland, not after Gilbert, with willful intent, publicly incited the entire city of Cleveland against him with an open letter that so viciously attacked LeBron's character it got Gilbert fined by David Stern.

Why would LeBron want to work again for that man, after all that? And why would Gilbert welcome him back after so publicly declaring him persona non grata?

Again: Because it's business.

And so Gilbert will listen because, first of all, he wants to win, and what better way to do that than by wooing back the best player on the planet? And LeBron will listen to Gilbert's pitch and listen to Pat Riley's pitch down in Miami -- maybe as soon as today -- and he'll decide what's best for him.

And if anyone has a problem with that, it's their problem, not his.

The man is simply looking out for his own best interests, same as everyone does who's in a position to do so. There's nothing more fundamentally American.

You might think James would be out of his mind to choose a remainder-bin franchise over one that's been to four NBA Finals in a row, but that was yesterday. Today, the Cavs are a team with one established star (Kyrie Irving) locked up and another (No. 1 pick Andrew Wiggins) waiting in the wings. And the Heat are a team in utter flux, with both Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade possibly on their way out the door.

So, yes, LeBron-back-to-Cleveland could happen. Which would make for a very interesting dynamic given how thoroughly the city reviled him for leaving four years ago.

I mean, you can't un-burn a jersey. Can you?

Ben Smith's blog.

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