The HEAT Beat with Josh Friedman


Questions that remain unanswered following LeBron James' departure

Questions that still are running through my mind....If only we had the definitive answers...

1) When did LeBron decide with certainty to return to Cleveland?

2)Do you think James knew what he was going to do prior to his meeting with Riley on Wednesday, July 9th, in Las Vegas?

3)As it turned out, James met with Cavs owner Dan Gilbert on Sunday, July 6th. Did James owe it to the Heat to meet with Riley prior to his huddle with Gilbert or the does the order of the meetings not matter?

4) Should he have notified Pat Riley and Micky Arison sooner than minutes before his    departure essay was announced on SI.Com?

5)On their red eye flight on a private jet from Las Vegas to Miami that landed just hours before the SI.Com essay was posted, did LeBron James tell Dwyane Wade of his decision?

6)If James notified Wade on the flight, should Wade have notified Riley or Arison before James essay was posted online? Did he owe it to management to make that phone call?

7)People calling my talk shows claim that if James made up his mind early, even during the signing moratorium, he should have notified the Heat at that time. Why? Why should he give up the leverage that made him the most powerful player in sports?

8)Why is it being held against James if in fact that he decided as far back as two years ago that he would return to Cleveland following the 2014 season?

9)Would James have left the Heat had they won the NBA championship this season?  ESPN's Stephen A. Smith claims James would have departed Miami even if the the Heat had three-peated.  I can't see him walking away from that.

10)In his SI.Com essay, why didn't James thank the fans?

11) Did James intentionally mislead the Heat management?

12)Why do people think James owed more to the team, the city and the fans?  If so, what did he owe and why?  He took the Heat to four straight finals, won two championships, won two regular season MVPs and two finals MVPs and led them to a 27 game win streak, second longest in NBA history.  What else did he owe? How much is enough?

13)Are Heat fans offended that James is trying to put the band back together by bringing Mike Miller, James Jones and possibly Ray Allen into the fold in Cleveland?

14)James was criticized four years ago for "the decision" and the ensuing rally at the AAA. So he was being ripped for essentially talking too much. Now some are knocking him for posting his essay online and immediately leaving the country.  So now he's being ripped for not talking at all. Why?

15)What would have been the "right" way for James to have announced his departure from Miami?

16)If James was seriously contemplating returning to Cleveland but hadn't yet made up his mind, did he "owe" it to the Riley and Arison to let them know that at the time?  For those who answer yes, realize that management in all sports talk trade with other clubs without ever notifying the players that they may be dealt away.

17)Did James intentionally drop bread crumbs as hints that we all missed? And for those saying we in the media should have picked up on supposed dropped hints, recall that in his first tweet after James announced his departure, Micky Arison said he was "shocked" at his decision to leave for the Cavs.

18)Why have James' goals seemingly shifted from winning as many titles as possible to now being satisfied with hoisting one Larry O'Brien trophy in Cleveland?

19)If James wins only one title in Cleveland or none at all, how will that affect his basketball legacy?  Wouldn't winning that long awaited championship in Cleveland raise his legacy to new heights?

20)Is James now virtually handcuffed to Cleveland because leaving the team and city a second time will put a stain on his legacy that can never be cleansed?