LeBron James has only been with the Los Angeles Lakers for a little less than two years, but the fans have already embraced him as one of the team’s all-time greats, and as a long as he’s producing, they’ll be happy to have him around — even if he’s not, they probably wouldn’t mind having him on the team for the right number.
Luckily, it sounds like James feels the same way about the Lakers.
During an Instagram Live Q&A on Thursday night, James was asked to name a team he would never play for, to which James responded the following (h/t Showtime Forum):
“I’m still playing, man. I gotta keep all my options open, man. But right now, I’ll tell you one thing — I don’t want to go nowhere besides here, baby. I’ll be a Laker for the rest of my life.”
It’s worth noting that James said something similar about the Cleveland Cavaliers when he re-signed with them in the summer of 2014, and again the year before he signed his contract with the Lakers in 2018. However, there are plenty of reasons to believe that James will finish out his carer in Los Angeles.
For starters, James is 35 years old. The soonest he can hit free agency is 2020, when he’ll be 36 years old. Depending on what happens between now and then, James could call it a career early, or opt into the final year of his contract for a farewell season.
There’s also James’ kids, who will start high school while James is still under contract with the Lakers. Yes, James has had to move his family before, but at this stage of his career, he probably values security more than anything.
Then, there’s the benefit of him staying in Los Angeles for his off-the-court endeavors, from acting to producing. The list goes on and on, which is why it’s reasonable to believe that James will actually retire with the Lakers. With the way he’s played in his first two seasons, I’m sure Lakers fans wouldn’t mind that.