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Magic GM Smith: ‘Surprised’ if LeBron leaves Cleveland

ORLANDO, Fla. — I just spoke to Orlando Magic [1] general manager Otis Smith after a press conference announcing the signing of Chris Duhon. Smith was impressed by the Celtics [2]‘ ability to keep the core together and add Jermaine O’Neal [3].

“They did a great job,” Smith said. “To sign Paul [Pierce] and Ray [Allen] and add a piece like Jermaine O’Neal? They are going to be tough again next year.”

Smith, who wouldn’t comment on the status of free agent J.J. Redick, was asked about LeBron James [4]. If James signs with the Heat, would it signal a shift of power in the Eastern Conference?

“I still think you have to put teams together,” Smith said. “That’s it. If all three of those guys go to Miami, that’s a very good team. But three guys don’t give you anything, you need a team. It gives them a chance to win a title, but doesn’t guarantee anything.”

Does Smith think James will end up in Miami?

“I would be surprised.”

Does he think he’ll end up in Cleveland?

“Uh-huh. Yup.”