Lakers Rumors: NBA Insider Predicts LA Trades LeBron James in New Year – All Lakers
A new year is upon us, and that’s good news for the Lakers – 2022 hasn’t been very kind to them.
The Lakers have been pretty bad this year for lack of a better word, and unfortunately LeBron James is in the thick of it. James, who still plays at the level of an elite superstar, missed the playoffs last season (and never came close to it) and is on course to miss the playoffs for the first time in consecutive seasons of his career.
James has repeatedly expressed his frustrations with the team in a non-confrontational manner, and it seems the front office won’t do anything to improve the team.
That’s why Sports Illustrated senior writer Chris Mannix made a bold prediction that LeBron will be traded in 2023.
“LeBron James will be traded:
“Let’s face it: LeBron James’ decision to extend his contract with the Lakers was a mistake,” Mannix wrote. “It was a mistake for James, who doesn’t need the guaranteed money, pushing his deal to 2023-24 limited his leverage. It was also a mistake for LA, who didn’t have doesn’t have the pieces to build a title contender around James and (this season, anyway) doesn’t have the ability to do anything with him.
“In an ideal world, the Lakers use the cap space created by Russell Westbrook’s exit next summer to sign Kyrie Irving or Draymond Green, flip a draft pick or two, and get back into contention next season. But if that’s not happening, can the Lakers really go into 2023 with James, Anthony Davis and whatever group of defrocked people they can muster around them? nerve, but if LA sniffs on big ticket items next offseason, is there really a better choice?”
With the way James’ contract is constructed, he can only be traded six months after signing his extension, which arrives at the February 9 deadline. This means he cannot be moved until the end of this season.
The Lakers are 13th in the Western Conference, 3.5 games shy of the play-ins and 5.5 games shy of the 6th seed – but it looks like they’re a lot further than that.
LeBron wants to win, and if he thinks it will be somewhere else, so be it. LA haven’t done much to help James and may not make a winning trade now this year. A 38-year-old man shouldn’t have to shoulder that kind of burden
The Akron native deserves to compete for a championship and while we all hope it will be in Los Angeles, it certainly doesn’t look like it will be.