Clips, Bulls have bright futures

Updated: February 7, 2005, 11:38 AM ET
By Chad Ford | ESPN Insider


Cleveland Cavaliers: The Cavs might have only one all-star on their roster, but when it's a superstar like LeBron James, you don't need much else.

"How many players are like that?" Grizzlies GM Jerry West told Insider last week. "Maybe four in the league? Not very many. They come along very rarely. That rascal....I don't know where he's going to go with his career, but my god. A guy that big and that gifted? He might be the fastest big guy in the league.
"Suddenly everyone wants to play in Cleveland. You can bring in players and all the sudden they get better playing with a guy like LeBron. It's the dynamic of having a player like that. What's a guy like that worth to a franchise?"

James is worth about $100 million, if you take into account how much the value of the Cavs' franchise rose in the past year.

Now let's see if LeBron can help the recruiting process. He wasn't able to convince Carlos Boozer to stick around for less money. But if he can lure a guy like Michael Redd to Cleveland this summer, the Cavs will be instant contenders for the crown.

Los Angeles Lakers: Obviously the Lakers (and Kobe Bryant) are starting to feel the heat in the aftermath of dumping Shaquille O'Neal this summer. Shaq makes everyone's job easier on the court and Kobe, if he was being honest, would have to be the first to admit it.

However, all is not lost in Los Angeles.

Chad Ford

ESPN Senior Writer