Windhorst: 76ers are a threat to sign LeBron James this summer

LeBron James is about to opt out of his contract with the Los Angeles Lakers and become a free agent this summer. At the very least, that is the expectation, something that was apparently confirmed by James’ agent Rich Paul.

There is also a general expectation that James will ultimately stay with the Lakers on a new contract after opting out. Opting out and then agreeing to a new deal would have its advantages for the 39-year-old, including allowing him to have a rare no-trade clause added to that new deal.

But nothing is certain, especially when James is involved.

There is always the chance he will leave the Lakers this offseason. If that happens, Brian Windhorst believes the Philadelphia 76ers would have a real chance to land him and that they would have a big advantage over other potential suitors — salary cap space.

“I think when you look at the options, I think the Lakers are still in a very, very strong position,” said Windhorst. “I would be surprised if he’s not a Laker. But it is fair to point out that Daryl Morey has been trying to sign LeBron for a decade now, multiple different opportunities, and of the teams that have a chance to win the championship next year, the only team with cap space that could offer LeBron a max contract is the 76ers. Other teams could do sign and trades, but the Lakers wouldn’t have to cooperate. The 76ers are a threat. I don’t think they’re a serious threat, but certainly in the NBA, you never rule anything out.”

A recent report by Keith Pompey in the Philadelphia Inquirer noted that James is one player the Sixers are interested in snagging in free agency.

Philly is already a very good team when healthy, but it needs that final piece to truly be able to challenge teams such as the Boston Celtics and even the New York Knicks. If for whatever reason James becomes unhappy with the situation in Los Angeles, would he consider giving up his love for “Taco Tuesday” in order to become a Philly cheesesteak aficionado?

Story originally appeared on LeBron Wire