Dan Gilbert may be the owner, Koby Altman may be the GM and Tyronn Lue may be the coach; but everyone knows that LeBron James runs the Cleveland Cavaliers. All you have to do is look at the trade deadline to realize that as LeBron shipped out his own best friend in Dwyane Wade in addition to five other players. That came after weeks of uninspiring play by the Cavs and locker room dysfunction, but Cleveland hopes the deals they made on Thursday will right the ship.
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With that knowledge heading into Friday's game vs. the Cavs, the Atlanta Hawks fans came prepared with a couple of in-game chants. They serenaded the Cavs with "LeBron will trade you" during the middle of the game. If that wasn't enough, Hawks fans brought up LeBron's impending free agency in the summer with chants of "LeBron will leave you."
hawks fans chanting “LeBron will trade you” and “LeBron will leave you to Cavs at the line lmao pic.twitter.com/AFHvGCrteP— Drew Corrigan (@Dcorrigan50) February 10, 2018
The good news for the other Cavaliers is that the trade deadline has passed so they are safe from being shipped somewhere (but "LeBron will cut you" is still in play). However, LeBron leaving the Cavs, again, is very much a possibility and much of that depends on how the Cavs finish out the season.
The Hawks fans had many chants throughout the game including "Where's your teammates" when LeBron went to the free throw line. But their plan may have backfired as LeBron tied a career-high in the one stat that is solely due to your teammates: assists. LBJ dished out 17 assists while also chipping in 22 points and 12 rebounds. It is his 10th triple double of the season which is second most in the NBA and it's the 65th triple double of his career which is fifth most in league history.
The Cavs easily defeated the Hawks 123-107 and they did it without any of the four players they acquired in trades. Cleveland is hoping to have those players available for Saturday's contest vs. Boston in what could be a preview of the Eastern Conference Finals.