Originally posted on Fox Sports Ohio  |  Last updated 10/30/12
CLEVELAND (AP) -- Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert now wishes he wouldn't have guaranteed his team would win an NBA title before LeBron James. When James left Cleveland for Miami as a free agent in July 2010, Gilbert famously promised in a letter to disappointed Cleveland fans that his Cavs would win a championship before James got one with the Heat. Well, that ended in June when James, capping his third MVP season, led Miami to a finals win over Oklahoma City. "Looking back now, that probably was not the most brilliant thing I've ever done in my life," Gilbert said Tuesday. Relaxed and wearing a wine-colored sport coat, Gilbert spoke to reporters on a number of topics before the Cavs' opener against Washington. When the subject turned to James, Gilbert said he would have done some things differently two years ago, most notably his guarantee. "If you're going to predict something that doesn't happen and you're going to do it publicly, you'd for sure take it back," Gilbert said. "When that happened when they won, it was the end of the end of the end of that whole thing. Now there's nothing more to talk about. In a way it was like a little bit of a relief. If they didn't win it, it would've been still another thing of who's going to win it (first)?" Gilbert said James' departure taught the Cavaliers a valuable lesson, one that Oklahoma City seemed to have learned recently in its decision to trade James Harden to Houston. When the Thunder realized Harden was not going to accept a long-term deal, the club traded him before losing him as a free agent. In hindsight, it's probably what Cleveland should have done with James. "The key thing, whoever you are and wherever you are, you can not wait," Gilbert said. "The big lesson was if a player is not willing to extend, no matter who they are, no matter where they are playing, no matter what kind of season you had, you can not risk going into a summer and having them leave in unrestricted free agency and get nothing back for it. "It's not the player's fault. That's on ownership. Had we done that, the whole thing would have been crafted as I'm sure the player or whoever would have said, Of course I would have stayed. You guys screwed up and ruined the whole franchise.' You're in a no-win situation." Gilbert was also asked about another shift of power in the NBA with the Los Angeles Lakers adding superstars Dwight Howard and Steve Nash during the offseason. Gilbert doesn't have a problem with the idea of megateams, and said even ones with a surplus of talent are not assured of winning. "I think a competitive league is better than a non-competitive league," he said. "You never know, there could be surprises. We'll see what happens this year."
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Osweiler: Film from last two years proves I should be starter

Daughter of Bucks owner burns Bill Simmons on Twitter

Tiger Woods tells golf world to try and kick this football he’s holding

Tyronn Lue: Gameplanning to defend Celtics harder than Warriors

How the Senators can upset the Penguins in Game 7

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Paxton Lynch cutting out early while other QBs stay late

Michael Jordan unique 1984 Converse shoes could fetch up to $100K at auction

Joe Girardi has interesting reason why no medical scans for Masahiro Tanaka

Ezekiel Elliott’s mom fires back after son criticized for being in car accident

Browns make Ryan Grigson senior personnel executive

Potential No. 1 pick Markelle Fultz looks positively jacked in recent photo

The 'Farewell to the Manu, the Myth, the Legend' quiz

Box Score 5/24: Craig Anderson saves the Senators

The 'Walk on home, boy' quiz

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Dejounte Murray gets his calls blocked twice

It's reality check time for the Texas Rangers

Box Score 5/23: Preds, Warriors move on to respective Finals

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Why wait? Our too soon Cavaliers-Warriors NBA Finals preview

NBA Weekend Awards: Who will take a bite of the Snow White Crystal Apple?

The 'How two award snubs might shake up the NBA' quiz

Preparing for the BIG3: Q&A with BIG3 co-founder Jeff Kwatinetz

Two months in and Nintendo's Switch dominates 2017 video game market

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Why the Indianapolis 500 is called 'the greatest spectacle in racing'

The 'Farewell to the Manu, the Myth, the Legend' quiz

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Dejounte Murray gets his calls blocked twice

It's reality check time for the Texas Rangers

The 'Walk on home, boy' quiz

NBA Weekend Awards: Who will take a bite of the Snow White Crystal Apple?

Why wait? Our too soon Cavaliers-Warriors NBA Finals preview

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

The 'How two award snubs might shake up the NBA' quiz

Preparing for the BIG3: Q&A with BIG3 co-founder Jeff Kwatinetz

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker