The uncertain future of superstar LeBron James with the Cleveland Cavaliers has been affecting trade talks involving point guard Kyrie Irving. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, the Cavaliers are hopeful that James will sign a contract extension with the team amid rumors that he plans to bolt Cleveland in 2018 and join the Los Angeles Lakers. However, the Cavaliers are also anticipating that James might leave the team after this season. With that, Wojnarowski said the Cavaliers are looking to get young assets from the Irving trade that could give them some building blocks for the future if James leaves the team for the second time.

In 2010, the Cavaliers allowed James to leave via free agency without getting anything in return.

James has a $35.6 million player option next summer in his deal with the Cavaliers after this season. While he plans to stick with the Cavaliers this coming season, James did not directly express his intention to stay with the team beyond that. Irving, for his part, demanded a trade from the Cavaliers, saying he wants to be the No. 1 guy rather than play second fiddle to James. Irving mentioned the New York Knicks, San Antonio Spurs, Minnesota Timberwolves and Miami Heat as his preferred landing spots.

Cavs want young players for Irving

The Cavaliers reportedly want a win-now veteran, a blue-chip young player, and a top draft pick for Irving. According to Wojnarowski, the Cavaliers are interested in New York Knicks big man Kristaps Porzingis, Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum, Phoenix Suns wing Josh Jackson, and Denver Nuggets guard Jamal Murray.

The Suns earlier offered Eric Bledsoe, TJ Warren, and Brandon Knight to the Cavaliers for Irving, but the latter turned it down, insisting that they want either Jackson or shooting guard Devin Booker in the mix. However, the Suns said Jackson and Booker are both untouchables. Phoenix then made a solid offer of Bledsoe, young big man Dragan Bender, and a 2018 first-round pick for Irving but the Cavs’ seem uninterested.

James headed to the Lakers in 2018?

Rumors are swirling that James plans to leave the Cavaliers and join the Lakers in 2018, forming a super team with Paul George of the Oklahoma City Thunder and young players Lonzo Ball and Brandon Ingram. The rumors were fueled further by Bleacher Report’s Kevin Ding, who said that LeBron's wife would prefer to live in Los Angeles full time. Recently, James referred to Los Angeles as "home" in a tweet.