A contract for Kawhi would almost guarantee an obligation from LeBron to sign with the Lakers as the the team intend on re-building a new powerhouse team with the two as well as the soon-to-be unrestricted free agent Paul George.
Houston could acquire James in a sign-and-trade deal, but it would require a third team to complete the transaction.
The most the Lakers or any other team could offer James is four seasons and $152.3 million.
As for Embiid and Simmons, it's obvious why they would be excluded from any trade.
The Los Angeles Lakers have "not been really aggressive the last few days" in trying to trade for San Antonio Spurs star Kawhi Leonard, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski said on a special episode of "The Jump", which ran through midnight and into the start of National Basketball Association free agency Sunday. It doesn't make any sense for the Celtics to trade away their young and talented players for someone who doesn't have interest in re-signing after this year.
The Spurs have until the N.B.A.'s annual trade deadline in February 2019 to keep weighing their options before they risk losing Leonard without compensation when he becomes a free agent next summer.
It is Paul who is set to hear free-agent pitches from the Lakers and other teams. The 2014 NBA Finals MVP has demanded to be traded.
James has yet to opt out of his contract in Cleveland, but we all know that's what's going to happen.
As the gulf between the San Antonio Spurs and Kawhi Leonard grows, the race to land the All-Star forward is pushing forward.
George will be an unrestricted free agent in July and while he admitted playing in his native state would be "attractive", he has also hinted he would like to re-sign with the Oklahoma City Thunder, claiming the team "checked all the boxes".
Leonard, who wants the Spurs to trade him, reportedly would prefer to head to the Lakers.
Time is not on the side of Los Angeles, and this is a smart tactic from the San Antonio front office. But 2019-20 could turn out to be a real problem with Leonard and Irving having the option next summer to skip the a year ago of their deals and enter the market.
In March, a frustrated Parker told the media that his injury was "a hundred times worse" than Leonard's. Having history to preclude trade discussions could force things to stall or have the Spurs send Kawhi Leonard to another team.