The baggage within the Cleveland Cavaliers organization is nearing a critical mass.
As the Cavs approach a trade deadline that could permanently alter the course of the franchise, there is reportedly no communication between the front office and the man who effectively holds the fate of the team in his hands.
LeBron James has "no relationship" with either owner Dan Gilbert or general manager Koby Altman, sources told The Athletic's Jason Lloyd. And while previous GM David Griffin reportedly used to communicate regularly with James and keep him in the loop regarding personnel decisions, the new front office headed up by Altman makes no such concession, and makes major decisions without seeking James' input.
Specifically, a source told Lloyd that the Kyrie Irving trade last summer was made against James' wishes and negotiated without consulting him. (To the first point, James reportedly told the Cavs to ignore Irving's trade demand and bring him to camp, but Irving "made clear to Gilbert and the Cavaliers he wanted out of Cleveland because he did not want to play another minute with James," a source told Lloyd.) James, who wanted the Cavs to retain Griffin, now reportedly believes he's in the dark about the current front office's plans.
The relationship between James and management apparently has grown so fractious and mistrustful that during the Cavs' disastrous team meeting last month, James was "yelling and cursing" at "at least two team executives," sources told Lloyd.
Meanwhile, "the belief is unanimous" throughout the organization that Gilbert is pulling all the strings behind the scenes, Altman's title be damned.
Add it all up, and you have an organization that appears to be in complete disarray with the deadline less than 48 hours away and James just five months from unrestricted free agency. It feels like something's gotta give.