"Wow. We know the president has trouble taking away the baseline, but that was unexpected. O.K., now let's go via hologram to Rick (Bluetooth) Davis, who is embedded with the brass in Oklahoma City's war room. What's happening there, Bluetooth?"
"You're not going to believe this, Chuck, but the Thunder has just tendered a max offer plus a promise to move the entire franchise to an enormous floating city and play all its home games off various Caribbean islands. As owner Clay Bennett just told me, 'We can't offer Manhattan, but we can offer Margaritaville.'"
"That's astonishing, Rick. We all figured the bidding would escalate, but not like this. To recap, for more than two years speculation about LeBron's possible destination has overshadowed all other NBA news, like wins and losses. In 2008, when Detroit traded for Allen Iverson, the talk was not about an Eastern Conference finalist acquiring a league MVP but rather the cap space the Pistons had cleared for oh-10. One G.M. even said then, 'I am afraid Joe [Dumars] has this whole thing wired.' With two years still to go! Of course, the same was said of Nets part-owner Jay-Z and, of course, you in New York, Donnie. In 2008, when you dealt starters Jamal Crawford and Zach Randolph and began taking on short-term contracts, critics said you were playing cap-room roulette, gambling any chance at current success on a prize that might never materialize."
"Not true, Chuck. When we signed all those players to back-to-back 10-day contracts it's because we believed in them."
"Suuuuuure. Of course, things really ratcheted up last winter, when Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert challenged Mark Cuban to a duel after the LeBron-to-Dallas rumors got too hot—and let me say that we hope to see you on your feet soon, Mark! After that, of course, Pat Riley was caught disguising a hypnotist as a Heat ball boy. And ... wait, we have another update. JJ?"
"Chuck, word is that Olympiakos, the Greek club that's been pursuing LeBron and is not tied to NBA salary cap regulations, has offered a staggering three-year, $750 million deal."
"Holy mackerel. That'll be tough to beat. We've got G.M. Kevin McHale via satellite. Kevin, what have the Timberwolves cooked up to get LeBron?"
"LeBron's a free agent? This year?"
"Um, O.K., we'll talk to Kevin later. For now we need to break for a commercial. Stay tuned, though, as there are at least 20 more teams to go, including live coverage of Donnie making the Knicks' offer in front of a Rockettes kick line! And once James does sign, don't forget to tune in tomorrow for Stay Away from That Ledge!, our new reality series that follows 10 of the G.M.'s who didn't land LeBron."
Do you have a better offer to make for LeBron James? Send it to SI.com/pointafter.