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Five reasons LeBron James should stay in Cleveland

Keith Allison/Flickr

The free agency period in 2018 is set to become as frenzied as any other. LeBron James, Russell Westbrook and Paul George are all eligible to become free agents, which has already started the hot stove churning on whether LeBron will leave his hometown Cleveland Cavaliers again.

LeBron is best served to stay in his hometown, though. There are five top reasons as to why:

1. Why go West?

If you’re LeBron James, why go to a Western Conference that is loaded with talent. With the Cavaliers, LeBron basically needs to edge out one team–the Boston Celtics. If he goes to the West, he then has to face the Golden State Warriors, Houston Rockets,San Antonio Spurs, and Oklahoma City Thunder. Even the Minnesota Timberwolves are on the rise and will be formidable. He basically has a straight shot to the Finals every year in the East.

2. No guaranteed winner

The only team that is a near lock to win a championship is the Warriors. If LeBron goes to any other team, there is no guarantee. Going to the West–as stated above–might put LeBron further from a title, and no team in the East–that can afford him, that is–has better talent than the Cavaliers.

3. Legacy questions

If LeBron truly cares about his legacy, team-hopping is not a great look. Any championship he wins from here on out will be treated like Durant’s. Meanwhile, the championship that LeBron won with the Cavs goes down in the pantheon of all-time great accomplishments–overcoming a 73-win team after trailing 3-1. Teaming up with another group of stars will not put LeBron past Jordan.

4. It’s home

LeBron will generate immense support regardless of where he plays–from that fan base. He already faces great pressure, and that only intensifies if he bolts Cleveland again. He’s from there, and the the city goes as he does. The ability to drive a city’s economy–where he’s from–is a powerful tool. Ownership will realize that when push comes to shove.

5. Proven teammates

LeBron’s teammates have proven that they can win a championship. Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love were a part of a title-winning group. Even if the Cavs choose to trade Love, they have a chip to improve the team. Plus, the Cavs are likely to add Dwyane Wade when he gets bought out from his deal mid-season with the Chicago Bulls. Walking away from Wade (potentially), Irving, and Love is a tough sell.

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