David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

The trade the Cleveland Cavaliers made with the Los Angeles Lakers on Thursday only seems to make sense if they plan on keeping LeBron James beyond the current season, but apparently LeBron still has not given them any such guarantee.

According to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst, the Cavs did not receive a commitment from LeBron that he will return next season before they pulled the trigger on sending Isaiah Thomas, Channing Frye and its first-round pick in the upcoming draft for Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr.

As Windhorst noted previously, the deal allowed the Lakers to free up enough salary cap space for a max contract slot this summer. They have been considered a potential suitor for LeBron, so the Cavs could end up making it easier for L.A. to sign James if he chooses to bolt in free agency.

The Cavs still have one asset that they are clinging to in case LeBron decides to leave again, but the deal they made Thursday clearly wasn’t made with rebuilding in mind. Perhaps they are confident James still sees them as his best chance to win championships going forward.

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This article first appeared on Larry Brown Sports and was syndicated with permission.

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