There is also a video of LeBron exchanging a series of handshakes and slaps with his sons as he headed to the locker room at the final buzzer. It was a sweet moment but it's telling that LeBron doesn't appear to grimace during the choreographed pleasantries. Perhaps LeBron was limited the last three games because of the injury. But you don't get extra credit for playing with self-inflicted wounds. And a hand injury shouldn't prevent you from trying.
It was eerily similar to LeBron's no-show performance in Game 5 against the Boston Celtics in 2010. And we know how that one ended. His body language in Game 4 on Friday as well as the timing of the injury news will create plenty of dialogue this summer.
Let's just hope LeBron's hand heals in time to sign his free agent contract next month.
The moment both the NBA and the city of Cleveland had been bracing for is here. The Summer of LeBron has started three weeks before free agency officially begins. His next move could dramatically alter the landscape, elevate a franchise into a contender and in the case of the Cavs, ruin a team.
"When I decide what I'm going to do with my future, my family and the folks that have been with me for the last 20 years will have a say-so," James said. "Then it ultimately will come down to me and so we'll see what happens."
Here is a list of the contenders and long-shots to land the game's best player:
When LeBron returned to the Cavs four years ago, he said he wanted to finish his career in Cleveland. He certainly has that option since the Cavs can offer him the most lucrative contract. James can also opt into his contract next season, earn $36 million and become a free agent in 2019. As LeBron said his family will play a significant role in his decision and with oldest son set to begin high school maybe the Cavs have a slight edge. The Cavs would benefit from making a significant move prior to July 1. Remember, the Cavs own the eighth overall pick in the NBA draft, which gives them options. The Cavs are most definitely on the clock.
If LeBron leaves this seems the most logical place. The Lakers have enough money to sign LeBron as well as another high level free agent. They have a young roster, a winning tradition and a history of attracting free agents. James also owns not one but two homes in the L.A. area. On the one hand it makes sense but why move into the same state, conference and division as the mighty Golden State Warriors who may be the favorite for another three years?
The Rockets were close to knocking off the Warriors in the conference finals until LeBron's pal, Chris Paul, suffered a hamstring injury and missed Game's 6 and 7. Don't rule out the possibility of James and Cavs owner Dan Gilbert essentially agreeing to a sign-and-trade. LeBron could opt into his contract and then be traded to Houston. That's how the Rockets acquired Paul. One issue is that the Rockets don't have much to offer.
The Sixers have a young roster, cap space and enough assets to build a roster would appeal to James. A lineup featuring LeBron, Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid surrounded by shooters would certainly be lethal. Plus, it keeps LeBron in the East.
If he went back to Cleveland why can't he go back to Miami? LeBron won two titles there. His pal Dwyane Wade is there and knows that Pat Riley is committed to winning a championship. It's a long-shot but never say never.
LeBron will this group of young players would be dangerous. The Celtics have the assets to work a trade with Cleveland and Boston would in theory be on the same level as Golden State. LeBron in Celtic green? Just don't see it.
LeBron does like David Fizdale and he loves playing at Madison Square Garden. If Kristaps Porzingis were healthy and if the Knicks had available cap space they'd be in play. Now? A long, long, long-shot.