It’s been a wild offseason for the Cleveland Cavaliers, and LeBron James is looking to squash headlines he perceives as false. 

Kyrie Irving wants out. Derrick Rose got brought in. With all of this drama surrounding the team, a lot of reports are he said-she said. Most recently, SLAM, one of the most revered outlets in basketball, was relaying news that indicated James had sour grapes about Irving’s request.

It should be known that SLAM didn’t break anything. As far as I am aware, the two parties have a stable relationship, given that James has been on the cover of multiple magazines. It’s also possible that James used SLAM as an example for spreading, dare I say, fake news (dun, dun, duuuuuuuuuun!). The last thing he’d want is someone airing dirty laundry that isn’t even true. Even if it were, James wouldn’t want anyone to know.

The first quoted tweet was about LeBron being “eager” to see Irving off since signing Rose. Joe Vardon of broke that story. The weird thing is that Rose isn’t a starting caliber point guard and a huge downgrade from Irving. James may be petty, but signing a barely average player to force out an All-Star is jeopardizing the Cavaliers’ chances of competing.

Next, we have SLAM shedding light on a comment made by Stephen A. Smith. The First Take host went on wax — quoting sources — and said that James “would be tempted to ‘beat [Irving’s] ass.'” That seems extreme; therefore I’m a bit skeptical. James being bothered about this report is far more understandable than the first because he’s not the kind of guy who would fight anyone — let alone one of his mentees who’s significantly smaller than him. (I’ll be honest, when I saw that quote, I thought it was referring to an on-court beating. Not the King giving out these hands.)

Is SLAM wrong for forwarding these reports? No. Is LeBron wrong for appearing irritated? No. SLAM is doing their job, and LBJ wants those breaking the news to put some respeck on his name.

(SLAM rolled with the punches.)

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