LeBron James has signed with the Los Angeles Lakers. Many people didn’t think it was actually going to happen, but it did. Cleveland is at a loss of words, Dan Gilbert gave a nice farewell statement to the man who has left before and it was a lot more sincere and nicer this time around. If you’re Dan Gilbert, you cant be upset. You knew this was going to be a possibility. You saw it flash before your eyes when J.R. Smith thought the game was tied, meanwhile the trade you made with the Lakers at the trade deadline for Larry Nance and Jordan Clarkson freed up some of the Lakers salary for them to be able to even make a move like this, which is so ironic. Below is the statement Gilbert gave.
Don’t mind what I tweeted, I thought it was funny every single blogger or sports media man on twitter posted this like they were breaking the news. Since LeBron has signed with the Lakers, multiple players have decided to follow him to good old Los Angeles. The players who have also signed with them are Rajon Rondo, Lance Stephenson, Javale McGee and they also re-signed Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. To make this happen the Lakers did have to renounce their rights to Julius Randle, allowing him to become an unrestricted free agent. I personally like the moves the Lakers have made, getting a guy like Rondo in there to teach Lonzo Ball is a fantastic move.
Rondo has maybe never had this much talent around him. Watching him facilitate with all these players really brings back that whole showtime Lakers feel. Stephenson and Caldwell-Pope will make one of the better benches in the NBA, which will include Brook Lopez, Lonzo Ball, Josh Hart and Moritz Wagner, unless they decide to ship a bunch of these guys off to San Antonio for Kawhi Leonard. I like the idea of starting LeBron James with Brandon Ingram and Kyle Kuzma to be able to have great length from the 2 to 4 spot. McGee fits nicely because he is a shot blocking big, but can also run the court pretty well. Now if you couldn’t tell the Lakers are in win now mode.
I doubt anyone is shocked by this, but any team that has LeBron James has to be in win now mode. I do think this Lakers team is very similar to how Boston looks, so i’m not sure if it’s totally worth it to go and trade for Kawhi Leonard. This young core has never played with a guy that has the talent of LeBron James. James could unlock the potential of these guys and make them look just as good as Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. Would I rather have a team however of LeBron, Kawhi and DeMarcus Cousins? Yea, most likely, but listen to this, say Kevin Durant wins another ring next year and feels he isn’t getting the love he wants from Golden State. He could very well opt out of his contract next year and join LeBron, since they will have another max salary contract slot if the team stays how it is. A Durant and James combo would be the best one two punch ever. The thing with the contract Durant signed is he can opt out after next year, which would work for both teams because if he leaves the Warriors could re-sign Draymond Green and Klay Thompson.
The NBA just got a whole lot more exciting, now the Eastern conference is a bunch of young teams consisting of the Celtics, 76ers and Bucks. LeBron going to the West just changed the rotation of the earth in a way. The Lakers have put themselves in the best situation they have been in a long long time. They can trade young talent for a proven superstar, wait till next year to sign a superstar and can keep all their young talented players. I’ll just end with this, watch out for the Lakers.