clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Rich Paul says LeBron James is ‘motivated’ to return to Lakers next season

After ending the season with comments about retirement that led to lots of questions, LeBron James is ready to get back on the court for the Lakers next season, according to his agent Rich Paul.

Denver Nuggets v Los Angeles Lakers - Game Four Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

No matter his intentions, LeBron James created quite the news cycle with his comments about retirement after the Lakers season. Even in the moment, few likely believed he would step away from the game that abruptly and under those circumstances but it was a peak into LeBron’s mind and his mental state.

It didn’t take long, though, for him to come back around to the idea of playing again.

In an interview with SiriusXM NBA Radio and Frank Isola, LeBron’s agent and longtime friend Rich Paul spoke about the retirement discussion and noted that it took all of two weeks for LeBron to be motivated to return.

“Then you saw how he ended the season and him making the comment (about) having a lot to think about and then, two weeks later, he’s texting me cause he’s motivated to get back out there.”

Even if LeBron never planned on retiring, the fact the idea came across his mind — and, for the first time, he publicly acknowledged the potential of retiring — means it’s becoming an increasingly possible outcome.

At the same time, this was a particularly grueling season for LeBron and the Lakers both mentally and physically, and that toll weighed on him at season’s end. Between his own injuries and the desperation the Lakers were forced to play with led to exhaustion at season’s end.

If the Lakers play their cards right this season, their depth will allow LeBron and Anthony Davis to play fewer minutes and less of a toll will be taken on their bodies. If the Lakers can keep the physical and mental toll down on the season, it likely won’t lead to quite as many questions from LeBron about how much longer his career can go and more success.

The main, immediate takeaway from Paul’s comments, though: the questions about LeBron’s future next season are all but officially over as he’ll be suiting up next year.

You can follow Jacob on Twitter at @JacobRude.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Silver Screen & Roll Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of Los Angeles Lakers news from Silver Screen & Roll