Everyone seems to agree that the New Jersey Nets shipping Richard Jefferson to Milwaukee for Bobby Simmons and Yi Jianlian was fundamentally about clearing cap space to try to lure LeBron James to the future Brooklyn Nets. One could imagine this happening, but I have to say I've always been skeptical of the idea that James would have substantially more marketing power in the Big Apple.
I could see that for, maybe, Michael Redd who tends to languish in obscurity right now because the Bucks aren't a great team and they're located in Milwaukee whereas the best player on a mediocre Knicks squad would be a star. But given James' current level of fame, if I were his manager I would tell him that team success is going to be a much more important factor than team location. James is already well-known and you could make the case that he's the best player in the league right now. If he wins championships, more people will make that case. If he plays with inadequate teammates and exits the playoffs in the first round people will start talking about how he's overrated and the world will move on to its next basketball savior.
To me, that would have to be the reason to leave Cleveland -- to move to a team with a better shot of winning. Ultimately, it's hard to sustain success as an NBA star without being on teams that go deep in the playoffs.
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