The Warriors could secure a meeting with James "out of respect for the Warriors' winning culture," a report says.

By Kenny Ducey
February 01, 2018

Golden State could set a meeting with LeBron James during free agency this summer, who "out of respect for the Warriors' winning culture" would hear the team out, according to ESPN's Chris Haynes.

James, 33, has a $35.6 million player option with the Cavaliers for 2018-19 which he is expected to decline. If the Warriors are able to clear enough cap space, according to the report, the four-time MVP could meet with them as he decides where to play next season.

After leading Cleveland to the first 3–1 comeback in NBA Finals history in 2016, James watched last June as Golden State celebrated its second title in three years. After the departure of Kyrie Irving this past offseason, it's been speculated he might explore joining another team well-positioned to make a championship run next year.

As Haynes notes, the Warriors would probably need to acquire James via sign-and-trade, and even then fitting him in under the salary cap would be difficult:

To make a sign-and-trade possible, Golden State also would need Kevin Durant to decline his player option and take even less than his current annual salary of $25 million, in addition to moving Shaun Livingston's salary to a team with cap space. Golden State likely would have to fill out its bench with players making the league minimum.

James has averaged 26.7 points, 8.8 assists and 7.9 rebounds in 49 games this season. Cleveland has lost 11 of its last 17 and sits third in the East.

Golden State's payroll currently stands at $137,494,845, according to Basketball Reference.

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