LeBron James to the Lakers? Yes, This Is a Rumor That’s Actually Going Around Right Now

From now until the time he retires, LeBron James' free agency decisions will be covered with the fervor of a presidential election or, say, an NBA prospect's loud-ass dad. This has been the case for a long time. Because of this well established fact—oh, and probably because the Cavs currently find themselves in a 3-0 Finals hole—rumors are seeping out about where LeBron will take his talents to next when he's a free agent in the summer of 2018 (yes, over a year from now).

Those rumors, which certainly won't be the last, have the current Cavs' star heading to Los Angeles to play for the Lakers. The other rumor that came out on Thursday has him going to…oh, also L.A., but this time to the Clippers. Kevin O'Connor of The Ringer relayed the chatter, which has reportedly been floating around NBA circles. O'Connor also made reference to a nearly year-old Yahoo article from Adrian Wojnarowski that said there was a belief throughout the league that James wouldn't remain in Cleveland for the remainder of his career. 

If you keep up with your LBJ rumors, this shouldn't come as a total shock, unless you expect him to somehow convince Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony and Dwyane Wade to come to Ohio.

O'Connor also talked about some comments Jalen Rose made on First Take this week, where he said he thought LeBron would eventually play in Cali because he has a house a half an hour away from the Staples Center (the same one that got vandalized):

After the completion of the 2017-18 season, LeBron will have a player option for the 2018-19 campaign worth $35.6 million.

But perhaps LeBron doesn't think Cleveland will stay competitive in the future. Or *clears throat loudly* perhaps he likes the attention. Or perhaps he's just sick of the narrative of “Why can't LeBron James win titles?!” even when everybody knows it's kind of a BS point because he's going up against a Finals opponent that's clearly superior.

It's up to you to decide how fact-based these statements are. That's kind of the thing with LeBron: everything about him becomes news.

Anyway, have fun going through this all over again, Cavs fans.

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Where Can Carmelo Anthony Go?

It's going to be an interesting summer for Carmelo Anthony no matter what ends up happening to the Knicks star.

There's the potential of a divorce hanging over his head (check the gossip pages), and Melo knows Knicks team president Phil Jackson wants nothing to do with the future Hall of Famer and would gladly pack Melo's bags if he could find a taker for his services. The only problem is Melo owns a no-trade clause—which Jackson gladly gave him three summers ago—and a 15 percent trade kicker that means whatever team acquires him will have to pay more for his services than the Knicks currently are. 

So Melo's options are kind of limited, to say the least. But there are a few teams out there that could make a play for the dynamic scorer. Some are obvious and have been widely discussed. One is kind of under the radar. Four of them should be contenders next year. The other is a wasteland featuring epic amounts of dysfunction, paranoia, and a future void of success. 

While he hilariously gets to call the shots in the process, we can't wait for the full-blown melodrama—pun intended—to play out over the summer. So before all the wheelings and dealings start popping when free agency begins, familiarize yourself with the likeliest destinations for Carmelo Anthony's services next season.


  • New York Knicks

    Odds Melo Stays There: 2-5

    Melo isn’t going anywhere because Phil Jackson isn’t going to get shit for him, and Anthony isn’t going to waive his no-trade clause unless it’s for a contender. So, Melo for like a couple vets and a 15th man? No thanks. This is an unfortunate set of circumstances. Carmelo doesn’t deserve to be treated this way and Phil clearly could give two shits about how Melo feels with the way he’s handling the situation publicly. Phil has bigger fish to fry, like running Kristips Porzingis out of town.

    Why anyone would want to be a Knick in the year of our Lord 2017 is beyond me, but both Carmelo and Porzingawd wanna stay in the Rotten Apple. Leave it to the Knicks to somehow always stay relevant, whether good or bad; this circus is here to stay. James Dolan should do his job and fire Phil Jackson right now! I would have my bags packed if I were Melo. Who needs this? Anthony’s feverish need to win in New York and have a statue erected in his likeness could be the only reason. That or his brand. #StayMe7o —A.D. 

     

  • Los Angeles Clippers

    Odds Melo Ends Up There: 5-1

    The easy thing for the Los Angeles Clippers to do would be this: re-sign Chris Paul and Blake Griffin to max deals, find a young, inexpensive shooter to replace an aging J.J. Redick, and go out and try it again. This would be a terrible idea. Yes, the Clippers have had a degree of success with their current lineup—if not a Western Conference Finals appearance—and yes, they could easily blame injuries for early exits like this year’s. But there comes a point when a core has run its course, and for the Clippers that time is now. The Griffin-Paul-DeAndre Jordan triumvirate has been together for seven seasons without as much a conference championship to show for it. And, at 32, Paul is entering the tail end of his prime. What he needs is a pure scorer who wants the ball in his hands at the end of games. Who he needs is Carmelo Anthony. —R.B. 

     

  • Washington Wizards

    Odds Melo Ends Up There: 10-1

    The Wizards haven't heavily been mentioned as a potential landing spot for Anthony because it's a dicey cap situation trying to make Melo fit, but if you look at Washington's roster and remember one high-profile signing made in the past, maybe it's not so far-fetched. Once upon a time, Wizards GM Ernie Grunfeld brought in Paul Pierce to provide veteran leadership and valuable scoring. The Pierce experiment, or whatever you want to call it, only lasted one season and it wasn't exactly a raging success—Washington lost to the Hawks in the Eastern Conference semis. At age 37, Pierce started 73 games, averaged 16.3 points per, and hit 38.9 percent of his threes. You don't think Melo could put up better numbers than that next year? You don't think a team that easily could have been in the Eastern Conference Finals this season could use another weapon like Carmelo to battle LeBron and Co.? Slot in Anthony with John Wall and Bradley Beal and that's easily one of the most potent threesomes in the league.

    Of course, there are hypotheticals. Would Melo and his ball-stopping ways screw up the Wizards? Would he whine about not getting enough shots with Wall serving as the focal point and Beal the clear No. 2 option? Would Phil Jackson be cool with Otto Porter and a pick in return for Melo? Does anybody on the Wizards roster even appeal to his antiquated tastes? We don't have the answers, but the more we think about it the more we think Washington makes a lot of sense for Melo. A.C. 


  • Boston Celtics

    Odds Melo Ends Up There: 25-1

    The Celtics are going to lose the Eastern Conference Finals, and once they do Danny Ainge will have some big decisions to make like what to do in June's NBA Draft with the No. 1 pick and whether making a move for Carmelo Anthony is smart. We all know Boston isn't going to get over the LeBron James hump until they either get more scoring help or Bron slows down. With guys like Jaylen Brown, Markelle Fultz (when they draft him), and the Nets 2018 first-round pick, plus Coach of the Year candidate Brad Stevens, the Celtics have an extremely promising nucleus for the future.

    Yes, they have Isaiah Thomas for another season, but does he become expendable if Boston drafts a point guard? Would Ainge seriously entertain an offer if Phil Jackson wanted a haul in return? We know Jackson covets Jae Crowder, but would Ainge feel comfortable giving up one of his best defenders and something else for Melo's offense? From Anthony's perspective, #StayMe7o shouldn’t hesitate to waive his no-trade clause if Boston comes calling. —J.F. 

     

  • Cleveland Cavaliers

    Odds Melo Ends Up There: 45-1

    Because Carmelo and LeBron James are boys, the idea of the two talented scorers playing together will always be brought up. And when LeBron was complaining about not having enough talent around him earlier this season, and the relationship between Melo and Phil Jackson really started to break down, speculation was running rampant that Melo could very likely find himself in Cleveland. Well, that obviously didn't happen, but reports surfaced that LeBron wanted Melo—even if it meant sacrificing Kevin Love. Cavs management didn't want to pull the trigger at February's trade deadline, and with Love playing so well in the playoffs what makes you think they're suddenly going to change their mind this summer?

    Offense isn't the issue with the Cavs. We know that for sure. And do the Cavs really have any other pieces that would intrigue Jackson, because we know he wants nothing to do with Iman Shumpert and J.R. Smith? The more likely scenario is that Dwyane Wade opts out in Chicago and teams back up with LeBron, leaving their boy Melo on the outside looking in at another run to the NBA Finals. Who needs enemies when you've got friends like that? —A.C. 

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Phil Jackson Still Wants to Trade Carmelo Anthony

They say time heals all wounds. Last month, New York Knicks president Phil Jackson suggested Carmelo Anthony “would be better off somewhere else” after the team finished the 2016-17 NBA season with a disappointing 31-51 record. So after receiving considerable backlash from Knicks fans for his remarks, maybe Jackson has turned over a new leaf when it comes to Anthony’s future with the organization? Maybe the Zen Master has realized that 'Melo is still an important piece of the Knicks roster going forward? Nope, and nope.

On Friday, Jackson spoke with reporters during the NBA Combine about his stance on 'Melo, and it appears that he still wants to part ways with the 10-time All-Star. “We'd like him to have success,” Phil said, per ESPN. “The opportunity is narrowing. We'd just like him to have success somewhere. We're not going to be there. Hopefully, we'll be maybe a playoff team next year. It would be tough to consider us a possible champion.”

When asked if he wants to see Anthony in a Knicks jersey next season, Jackson didn’t back down on his stance, mentioning 'Melo’s no-trade clause, which has created an impasse in trade talks. “He has a no-trade contract,” he said. “I think I expressed what I felt. I can't express it any better. I thought it was well-said, even though a lot of you didn't feel quite that way.”

With Jackson still determined to send 'Melo packing, it would be in the best interest of both parties to figure out some sort of resolution this summer. This feud between Jackson and Anthony cannot last for another entire season in New York. 

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What’s Going On with Kristaps Porzingis and the L.A. Clippers?

Kristaps Porzingis is supposed to be the player to lead the New York Knicks into a new era once their established stars are phased out of the team. After a strong rookie season, Knicks fans were rightfully excited to begin dreaming about how prime Porzingis would impact the franchise.

They need to make sure he's still on the roster to do that, however. With Porzingis in the midst of an overseas trip, the young big man tweeted (and quickly deleted) the name of an NBA franchise on the opposite coast—the Los Angeles Clippers:

There are a million explanations for this tweet, and not all of them are negative. Porzingis has been gallivanting around Barcelona, and there's a decent chance one of his friends grabbed his phone while they were clubbing in the middle of the night, sending a tweet just to mess with people. 

But the broader context is more ominous. Porzingis is in the midst of a cold war with the Knicks' front office, having skipped the exit meeting he was supposed to have with Knicks president Phil Jackson. Once other teams got wind of his frustration with New York's management, they began inquiring about his availability in trade talks, according to ESPN's Ian Begley.

Porzingis' quickly-deleted (and as of yet unexplained) tweet could be another warning shot for Knicks brass. Fans reacted how you might expect—with sheer shock and anger at the prospect of losing a potential franchise player:

The Clippers could be in the market for a big shake-up this summer after another early playoff exit, so it wouldn't be shocking if they were one of the teams inquiring about Porzingis' availability. It should take a ton for any team to acquire the talented Latvian, but if Porzingis continues to send signs of dissatisfaction, the Knicks will find it harder and harder to deal with the disgruntled star.

Dealing with a disgruntled star whose name isn't Carmelo Anthony is the toughest test yet for Phil Jackson. “How's it goink,” indeed.  

Send all complaints, compliments, and tips to sportstips@complex.com.

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Rick Ross Addresses Birdman Beef, Talks Carmelo and La La Anthony Relationship Trouble

Rick Ross recently stopped by the Complex office for a session of Complex Live where he chopped it up with Speedy about plans for Port of Miami 2 and working with Chris Rock.

It sounds like those waiting on the sequel to Ross' debut album won't have to wait till long as the veteran MC said Port of Miami 2 may come this year, which could potentially mark the second time he's dropped two albums in one year.

Earlier this year, Ross dropped Rather You Than Me, which featured a number of big name collaborations, none arguably bigger than Chris Rock. The legendary comedian popped up on two songs, and it turns out there's a lot more he said in the studio. “He went on a 20-minute rant,” Ross revealed. “I just took two lil' pieces out of it.” Definitely looking forward to what else Rock got off his chest.

Ross addressed his issues with Birdman, which he shared on wax in “Idols Become Rivals.” “A lot of people may have took that as a diss record, but for me, I hope homie took something from that, and I hope something good come from that.”

Rozay also made his bid for Carmelo Anthony to come to the Heat, and spoke on the relationship troubles between La La and the Knicks star. Check out the full video above.

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Luxury Fyre Festival in the Bahamas ‘Fully Postponed’ Amid Reports of Total Chaos

A so-called “luxury” music festival in the Bahamas originally scheduled to feature performances from Pusha T, Desiigner, Lil Yachty, Blink-182, and more has descended into complete pandemonium. The festival was co-organized by Ja Rule and promoted by Bella Hadid and other celebrities, but BBC News reported Friday that the event had been plagued with reports of “no security” and canceled flights.

Reports on social media, including a play-by-play rundown from writer William N. Finley IV that was still in progress at the time of this writing, paint a pretty grim picture of the Exuma proceedings:

On Thursday, Blink-182 issued a statement announcing their decision to pull out of their previously scheduled Fyre Fest performances this weekend and next weekend. “We're not confident that we would have what we need to give you the quality of performances we always give our fans,” the band said. Other artists listed on the festival's schedule included Skepta, Tyga, Kaytranada, Major Lazer, and Rae Sremmurd.

Fyre Festival, according to Vanity Fair, is a product of Fyre Media, the startup Ja Rule launched with tech partner Billy McFarland in 2015. “We didn't just want to be a tech company that was a pure enterprise with no consumer awareness,” McFarland said in an interview conducted prior to the chaos. “So a festival was a great way to go and do that and beyond people who are attending.” The festival aimed for luxury, with a spokesperson telling Vanity Fair it was possible “to spend in excess of $104,995” for the “Fyre experience.”

Early Friday morning, a Twitter account associated with the Fyre Festival announced that the event had been “fully postponed.” In a previous statement on Instagram, Fyre reps conceded that “things got off to an unexpected start” on the first day of the would-be festival.

The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism offered a “heartfelt apology” to Fyre attendees who had traveled for the event, saying in a statement that “tourism is our number one industry” and that they were “extremely disappointed” in the way the festival had unfolded:

We are extremely disappointed in the way the events unfolded yesterday with the Fyre Festival. We offer a heartfelt apology to all who traveled to our country for this event.  Tourism is our number one industry and it is our aim to deliver world-class experiences and events. Hundreds of visitors to Exuma were met with total disorganization and chaos. The organizers of Fyre recently asked the Ministry of Tourism for support for their private event. The Ministry of Tourism is not an official sponsor of Fyre Festival. Given the magnitude of this undertaking, the MOT lent its support as we do with all international events. We offered advice and assisted with communications with other government agencies. The event organizers assured us that all measures were taken to ensure a safe and successful event but clearly they did not have the capacity to execute an event of this scale.  A team of Ministry of Tourism representatives is on the island to assist with the organization of a safe return of all Fyre Festival visitors. It is our hope that the Fyre Festival visitors would consider returning to the Islands Of The Bahamas in the future to truly experience all of our beauty.  

Complex's attempts to reach Fyre Festival reps Friday were not immediately successful.

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Carmelo Anthony Is Reportedly Doing Anything He Can Think of to Save His Marriage

Just 10 days after it was revealed that Carmelo and La La Anthony were ending their seven-year marriage, and just nine days after news came out that Carmelo allegedly got a woman not named La La pregnant, the NBA vet is reportedly digging deep into his bag of ideas to save his strained relationship with his wife.

According to sources who spoke to TMZ Sports, Melo has gone the desperate route so many men have gone before by sending his wife-for-now texts that tell her he loves her and doesn't want her to leave. On top of that, Melo also reportedly apologized (for getting a woman pregnant? For allegedly walking around saying “She's married, I'm not”? It's unclear), and has asked her to go on dates as well as vacation together.

TMZ also made sure to point out that Melo has been liking her Instagram posts, which is something he never bothered to do before. These sources also revealed to the media outlet that the two are still cordial for the sake of their son.

Just a few days ago, La La was spotted in NYC strip club Sapphire where she was reportedly shooting a documentary about women in “risque industries” who break into the spotlight called Goal Diggers.

Considering all this recent info about Carmelo trying to win her back, it seems like La La's shower pic is working as well as anyone could've hoped for.

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Joe Budden and DJ Akademiks Settle the Debate on Who the LeBron James of Rap Is

On today's episode of Everyday Struggle, Joe Budden and DJ Akademiks settle the debate on who the LeBron James of rap is. They also break down more rappers and their NBA equivalents. Later, the guys discuss Chance the Rapper taking shots at labels during his recent concert and examine if he's really independent. To wrap up, Budden and Akademiks debate if French Montana should be hanging out with La La after her split from Carmelo Anthony. 

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