With his return to Cleveland just two days out, LeBron took some time to explain to The Athletic’s Joe Vardon what went wrong with the team he had spent 11 seasons playing for.

“Everyone knows that when Kyrie got traded, it was the beginning of the end for everything. It’s not a secret. You realize at that point in time, take nothing from Koby, because Koby [was just named GM], but at that point in time, you realize that Koby’s not the only one running the team, as [former GM David Griffin] had done, and that’s why Griff was let go pretty much.”

James also explained that he was told by Altman that Kyrie would not be traded, only for the unhappy point-guard to be dealt to Boston the very same day. No doubt, it’s that type of instability that pushed a guy like LeBron away, and why they’re currently sitting at 15th in the Eastern Conference, with a miserable 2-12 record for the season.

Kevin Love is suffering from injury, 2018 first round pick Collin Sexton has failed to impress, and the Cavaliers have yet to prove they are capable of running their franchise.

Really makes you think… what if they hadn’t traded Kyrie? What if they stood pat, waited for LeBron to smooth things over, and had found a way to keep the team intact? Maybe saying they’d have beat the Warriors is a stretch, but they would certainly be in much better shape now.