This puts increased pressure on the Lakers, considered a front runner to land LeBron, to resign San Antonio's Kawhi Leonard or George. Maybe James doesn't come, and the Lakers have to settle for Plan B. And what if Leonard becomes smitten with wherever he's traded and decides to re-sign there next season?
This doesn't all mean that Zo won't be a part of any Leonard-centric trade.
That report suggested Boston could propose a trade centered around Kyrie Irving, who, like Leonard, will hit unrestricted free agency in 2019.
However, the report indicates that the Spurs might want more for the two-time All-Star.
But the Lakers have Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma, Josh Hart and Lonzo Ball (who'd probably have to be conveyed to a third team) to forma package.
Durant also has an opt-out clause he is expected to exercise, but he would shock the league if he did anything other than sign a lucrative contract to return to Golden State.
This report basically confirms that if the Lakers don't get Kawhi, they don't get LeBron.
The Spurs have always been most intrigued with Boston's trade assets, but it remains unclear how rich of a package the Celtics are willing to offer without a full understanding of the long-term implications of Leonard's quadriceps injury, or an assurance that they can be certain of Leonard's willingness to consider a long-term commitment next summer, league sources said.
According to Smith, Durant did not see much reason to leave the Warriors, with whom he has won two straight National Basketball Association titles and Finals MVP awards, but Joe Vardon of Cleveland.com subsequently threw cold water on the report. That said, Wojnarowski notes that the Celtics are "extremely cautious" due to the uncertainty with Leonard's health and his desire to play for the Lakers.
Lakers president Magic Johnson recently gave a confident statement about the Lakers' offseason, saying if things don't go their way this summer, they will move onto next summer to go after free agents.