After being swept in the Western Conference Finals, LeBron was very open about contemplating retirement this offseason. That decision could determine the direction of the Lakers' offseason. LeBron is about to start a two-year extension with Los Angeles which will pay him $46.9 million next season and $50.65 million in 2024/25 if he picks up his player option.
No one is quite sure what LeBron will do. He looked all of his 38 years at several points during the playoffs. Furthermore, this season marked the first of LeBron's career where he did not receive at least one MVP vote. However, LeBron has also expressed the desire to play at least one season alongside his son Bronny. James' eldest son will play just 1.7 miles from Crypto.com as he spends a year at USC. Despite this speculation, sources are starting to talk about which way LeBron is leaning.
Close Source Says LeBron Stays
A source "close to James" has told ESPN that he believes that LeBron star will be back next season and fulfill his contract. While his payout is astronomical, that would allow the Lakers to attempt to run it back next season. "I would say this resoundingly clear: Our intentions are to keep our core of young guys together," Lakers vice president of basketball operations and general manager Rob Pelinka said Tuesday.
Furthermore, the Lakers would likely prefer to keep LeBron, as it would be one less contract they would have to worry about. The Lakers will already be pursuing an extension with Austin Reaves, Rui Hachimura, and DeAngelo Russell. Furthermore, they have longer-term options to worry about, such as extensions for the likes of Anthony Davis and Jarred Vanderbilt. However, we won't know for a while what LeBron plans to do next year. He was most recently spotted at the high school graduation of his son Bronny. What do you think LeBron will do? Let us know in the comments.