After reportedly getting assurances from general manager Koby Altman that it wouldn’t happen, owner Dan Gilbert green-lit the trade with Boston anyway, triggering what James calls “the beginning of the end for everything” in Cleveland.
— The Athletic (@TheAthleticCLE) November 19, 2018
LeBron makes his return to Cleveland as a visiting player this Wednesday.
Per The Athletic:
“Everyone knows that when Kyrie got traded, it was the beginning of the end for everything. It’s not a secret,” James said.
James suggested he didn’t feel he was lied to by Altman, so much as Altman was overruled by owner Dan Gilbert.
“You realize at that point in time, take nothing from Koby, because Koby (was just named GM), but at that point in time, you realize that Koby’s not the only one running the team, as (former GM David Griffin) had done, and that’s why Griff was let go pretty much,” James said.
Cavs front-office officials declined to be quoted for this story but disputed that Altman gave James any indication the trade would not occur. They also said Altman asked James whether he would commit to the Cavs long-term if Irving were not traded, and James said no.