According to a source with first-hand knowledge of James' plans, the Larry King interview that was shot Tuesday and will air Friday on CNN was only the beginning of his elaborate scheme to draw unprecedented attention to his courting. James, according to the source, is in discussions with Nike to create a new shoe for every visit along his free agent path starting July 1. The shoes would have the date of the visit printed, with James already having scripted his itinerary for the Free Agency Tour 2010.
The source insists that he'll head for New York first to visit with the Knicks, and then spend time with the Nets. Chicago will be next, with the Bulls hoping he wants to follow in the footsteps of Michael Jordan and become the Windy City's beloved star. Depending on the level of sustained public interest and the discussions with the teams in the respective cities, James will decide at that point whether to continue on to Miami and possibly Los Angeles to see the Clippers.
That final stop would be Hollywood style in every way, with James simply putting on a show intended to create buzz in yet another big city and maintain the mystery of where he will go. And for what it's worth, the source expects James to return to the Cavaliers by the time the circus comes to an end.
"I don't know what he said I did," James said. "I was trying to get an explanation from him but he ended up running to the other side of the floor. It was a bad call. Like I said, I watched it in the [locker] room. I took a crab dribble, which is a hesitation dribble, and then two steps. Everybody, you call guys can watch it. The bad part about it was I was able to finish at the rim with contact, so it would have been a three-point play. So it's tough."
"That's just how it is," Haywood said. "You know, any time LeBron gets touched, Mike runs out there like LeBron got shot or something. Calm down Mike. It's not that serious. We're not trying to take him out. It's all within the confines of the game. I don't see how coaches should be running out on the court like that anyway. Isn't there a coach's box? Since we're talking about the confines of the league rules, he shouldn't be out of the box ...
You [Ivan Carter] have been covering me for how many years? I mean, it's not like I'm a guy that takes guys out. I've been criticized normally for NOT fouling, right? This is actually different ground for me."