LeBron James Talks Lakers Contract, Anthony Davis, Son Bronny and Retirement

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistDecember 7, 2020

Los Angeles Lakers' LeBron James (23) reacts during the first half in Game 6 of basketball's NBA Finals against the Miami Heat Sunday, Oct. 11, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press

LeBron James made it clear that he's happy with being a Los Angeles Laker for the next few seasons, as he signed a two-year, $85.6 million contract extension last week that will keep him in Los Angeles through the 2022-23 campaign. 

That extension will keep him paired with superstar Anthony Davis—who signed a five-year, $189.9 million max deal with the Lakers this offseason—for the next three seasons.

James spoke to reporters Monday about those two moves:

Mark Medina @MarkG_Medina

LeBron James on he and Anthony Davis agreeing to long-term extensions: "We're here and committed to this franchise. We're going to give it all this franchise."

It will also allow him to become a free agent in the summer of 2023, when his son Bronny potentially could be drafted:

Lakers Nation @LakersNation

LeBron mentions his contract now will expire the same year Bronny graduates from high school. "So I'll have options," he said.

By that time, James will have had the chance to win a few more titles with the Lakers, adding to the four he already has in his career. He also will have made a strong case to be considered the greatest player of all time. The chance to play on an NBA team with his son—if Bronny reaches the leaguewould be the cherry on top of an incredible career.

Getting to that point healthy and productive is also important considering James turns 36 on Dec. 30. We haven't seen him decline to this point, which is remarkable, but it will happen at some point

Mark Medina @MarkG_Medina

LeBron James on if he will load manage this season: "We'll be as smart as we can be." LeBron said "every game matters" and "we never shortchange our stuff." But considering the short offseason, LeBron said "we're very conscientiousness of what we do going forward."

Mark Medina @MarkG_Medina

LeBron James said he hasn't thought on "how long I'm going to stick around this game." He said he never wants to take each season for granted.

Partnering with a superstar like Davis, who's in his prime at the age of 27, will help. James doesn't have to be the best player every game, like he did during his last few years with Cleveland.

Davis proved in this year's postseason that he could hit big shots and handle the biggest moments. He, not James, led the Lakers in scoring during their title run, albeit by 0.1 points per game:

  • Davis postseason averages: 27.7 points, 9.7 rebounds, 1.4 blocks and 1.2 steals per game.
  • James postseason averages: 27.6 points, 10.8 rebounds, 8.8 assists and 1.2 steals per game. 

There arguably isn't a better star duo in the NBA right now, making the Lakers the favorites to repeat as champions heading into the 2020-21 season.


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