INDEPENDENCE: The NBA lost three future hall of famers in one summer when Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett joined Kobe Bryant in retirement. To LeBron James, that means he’s next.
“It feels like our era is next,” James said Tuesday. “Me, [Dwyane] Wade, Melo [Carmelo Anthony], [Chris] Bosh. We’re next. We’re on deck. We’re the next group behind those guys.”
James is entering his 14th NBA season. He should enter the top 10 all-time in scoring this season and continues climbing career charts in plenty of other categories. But just because his era is nearing the end doesn’t mean he’s thinking retirement. He thought it was “insulting” when he was asked if his peak years are behind him and made it clear he’s not anywhere near ready to walk away from the game.
“I said we was on deck,” he said. “Not that I was the DH.”
One of his era’s peers just might be the next to go. Chris Bosh, his former teammate and fellow member of his 2003 NBA Draft class, appears to have his career in jeopardy following more heath complications. Bosh failed his physical with the Miami Heat, who made it clear they are moving on from him — effectively ending their Big Three era just six years after it started.
“I stand behind my brother Chris, and the most important thing is his health. So whatever decision he wants to do, and go forward, I’m all for it,” James said. “Obviously we all know it’s probably a difficult situation for him, and it’s pretty surprising a little bit to hear that the team is just done with him, and then to come out and say it. It’s not like I’ve been there, to know exactly what’s going on in the interior. So I’ve only seen it from the exterior like the rest of us. I just wish the best for him and he has my support.”
Yes, that was a subtle dig by James at Heat President Pat Riley.
James congratulated the Indians on clinching the Central Division title this week.
“That’s phenomenal. … Hopefully they can continue it,” he said. “They look so good right now. They’re playing some great baseball. Hopefully they can continue it throughout the playoffs.”
The Cavs’ championship eliminates the Indians and anyone else from having to talk about the city’s title drought ever again.
“We have the best sports fans in the world. We have three great sports teams,” James said. “Obviously our Browns are struggling a little bit over the years, but the Indians are playing great baseball. We’re trying to do our thing as well, and we have some other teams in the city that just try to give our fans something to cheer for and be excited about. When they do leave town or they go somewhere, they can wear our gear or just feel great about being a Cleveland sports fan. It’s a good feeling right now.”
Larry Drew was promoted to Tyronn Lue’s associate head coach and Damon Jones was officially named an assistant coach on Tuesday. Jim Boylan, Mike Longabardi, James Posey, Phil Handy and Vitaly Potapenko were retained as assistants. Mike Gerrity was promoted to director of player development for the Canton Charge and will also serve as a player development assistant with the Cavs. The team also promoted Dan Vincent to special assistant to the head coach/manager of advanced scouting.
Nate Reinking was officially named coach of the Charge. His assistants will be Melvin Ely and Sam Jones.
Jason Lloyd can be reached at email@example.com. Read the Cavs blog at www.ohio.com/cavs. Follow him on Twitter www.twitter.com/JasonLloydABJ.