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LeBron James will continue to stay with the Lakers after the historic million-dollar deal
The speculation about the future of LeBron James has ended, the 'King' finally decided to stay in Los Angeles playing for the Lakers for two more seasons. Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN broke the story after Klutch Sports CEO Rich Paul confirmed that LeBron James will stay with the Lakers for two more seasons. His performance level has remained consistent despite his status as one of the oldest players in the league.
Just last season, he battled for the scoring title against Nikola Jokic and Giannis Antetokounmpo as the only three players to average 30+ PPG. That was more than enough for his agency to negotiate the most impressive two-year contract in league history. That set him apart from the rest of the NBA's stars, but it should also motivate him for next season.
According to Woj, the Lakers agreed to pay LeBron James a total of $97.1 million over the next two years. That makes him the highest paid player in the entire league, averaging $48.05 million guaranteed. However, there is more to this contract than meets the eye. Get this, LeBron's total salary could increase to $111 million if the 2023-2024 salary cap rises to a much higher number. The extension also includes a 15% trade bump.
It's an ideal way to seal the deal for what could potentially become one of LeBron James' final contracts as an NBA star as he enters the 20th year of his storied career. That contract also includes a player option to extend his contract for one more season in 2024. A deal that makes LeBron ineligible for a no-trade deal because he secured an extension, not a new deal.
Securing that extension also puts LeBron James as the highest-paid player in NBA history with $532 million over his nearly 20-year career in the league. He surpasses Kevin Durant in this specific category. James still hopes to stay at the top of his game until either Bronny or Bryce James' boys make it to the NBA and play with either of them as professionals.
In the history of American sports, there are very few examples of this happening with any degree of success. LeBron had Ken Griffey Jr. as his example since the two shared the MLB stage during their time as father and son with the Seattle Mariners. Can LeBron James get that far to play with his sons?