LeBron won’t meet with Cavaliers in person when free agency opens

Basketball: Free agent fireworks set to begin for NBA teams

Basketball: Free agent fireworks set to begin for NBA teams

"The human mind is addicted to stories", author Jonathan Gottschall said.

Last week, OddsShark tweeted that the Lakers were heavily favored to sign James at 4-13, while the Cavaliers are second at 13-4.

If there was ever a time for any of us to see into the future, it would have been yesterday. James will make his next public comments on July 30 in Akron when he opens a public school started by his family foundation.

James hasn't ruled out staying in Cleveland but he has a reputation for seeking out greener pastures and no fans know that better than the Cavaliers' faithful. The league's glamour franchise hasn't won a playoff game since 2012 and hasn't been to the postseason since 2013 - after missing the postseason just five times in its first 65 years of existence.

Unrestricted free agents can agree to deals on Sunday. But, a return to Cleveland in 2014 healed the wounds; and the Cavaliers fans embraced him once again. For three of those seasons, James teamed with Kyrie Irving, a perennial All-Star, to form one of the league's most fearsome duos.

Herron said he recently talked to a bar owner in downtown Cleveland who told Herron that he might have to lay off part of his staff next winter if James leaves town.

According to the report, it is unclear that the two sides have set up a meeting. This time, few would blame him if he did.

A team with James is an instant title contender.

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However, now the Philadelphia 76ers are making a run at James. Most of all, they sorely miss the secondary creator they traded away in Kyrie Irving.

Free agency begins at 12:01 a.m. ET Sunday, and the balance of power in the National Basketball Association could shift if James chooses to leave Cleveland and create a new superteam with the Los Angeles Lakers or join a burgeoning power such as the Houston Rockets or Philadelphia 76ers.

The Sixers can offer James a chance to play alongside budding, young stars Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid as well as stay in the Eastern Conference, where the path to the NBA Finals is far easier than out West.

The Cavs have the $5.3 million taxpayer's midlevel exception available to them to spend on free agents, which they could offer to one player or try to split between two players in order to offer a slight premium over the veteran's minimum. These names included Richard Jefferson, Channing Frye, Jamal Crawford, Jeff Green and Shabazz Napier. So, James' story loses its sheen of perfection if he leaves Ohio.

Kevin Durant is one of the more famous examples. But in a made-for-TV spectacle known as "The Decision", James announced that he was joining the Miami Heat in 2010.

A source familiar with the Cavs' thinking said re-signing James is Cleveland's "Plan A, B and C" when it comes to free agency.

"LeBron, you came home and delivered the ultimate goal".

Those unknowns remain, but James is closer to solving them. But LeBron himself should be dreaming of ruining those stories.

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