With the Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets continuing their pursuit of a calendar year-long 73 win season, the NBA is increasingly a two team league. The only team in the Western Conference who can compete with them is the two-time defending champions, the Los Angeles Lakers.
When LeBron James decided to join the Los Angeles Lakers, pundits and fans around the country collectively groaned. Not only had James agreed to a four-year, $153 million contract, but he did so while the Lakers still had to pay Kobe Bryant’s $30 million remaining contract. Why would James make such a move, even with Michael Jordan standing by in his role as team president?
If you’re a fan of “The Decision” and the Lakers’ recent success, you’ve probably had an inclination to blame the superstar recruit LeBron James for the team’s recent failures. After all, he was the one who helped drive the team out of their last Finals appearance, and he’s the one who left for Miami. But is he really to blame?. Read more about lebron james’ future with the lakers and let us know what you think.
Following an early departure from the playoffs this summer, LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers lost no time in looking forward to the future. The Lakers (headed by general manager Rob Pelinka) acquired a number of new players to their squad when NBA free agency started. They have basically pushed themselves into the “super-team” debate, much to the chagrin of basketball fans worldwide.
The Lakers have already signed Russell Westbrook, Carmelo Anthony, Dwight Howard, Kendrick Nunn, Trevor Ariza, Malik Monk, Wayne Ellington, and Kent Bazemore with plenty of time remaining in the summer. They also re-signed promising forward Talen Horton-Tucker and have been touted as a possible contender for veteran sharpshooter Danny Green.
Montrezl Harrel, Alex Caruso, Kyle Kuzma, and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope were all lost for the Lakers. However, the team’s prevailing consensus going into James’ 19th season is that it has positioned itself atop the Western Conference. Some have even referred to this group as one of the finest James has ever been a part of.
LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers have assembled a true NBA super-team for the 2021-22 season.
With the Lakers making so many changes in such a short period of time, it didn’t take long for fans around the NBA to voice their dissatisfaction with the situation. Since Kevin Durant joined the Golden State Warriors in 2017, super-teams have been viewed with suspicion, and many believed the Lakers were already a top team in the Western Conference prior to their flurry of acquisitions.
While it’s understandable to argue that James and the Lakers have loaded the deck in their favor this offseason, the plain truth is that LA needed to improve this summer — and they did. The Lakers not only missed the playoffs this year, but they also battled mightily throughout the regular season.
It’s easy to forget at times, but the Lakers barely made it into the Western Conference semifinals. They were obliged to compete in the newly established play-in tournament after finishing with a 42-30 record and being the seventh seed.
That’s not ideal for a team that saw itself as a strong favorite to retain its championship.
Despite having proven star power in the form of LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the Lakers needed to improve this summer.
LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers. | Christian Petersen/Getty Images
A No. 7 seed is enough to make any general manager want to make significant changes in the summer, but the Lakers were in a pickle because their two greatest players — LeBron James and Anthony Davis — were starting to show severe symptoms of wear and strain.
Due to injuries, James missed 27 games and played a career-low 33.4 minutes per game, while Davis missed half of the season due to his own injury woes.
Someone like Westbrook, who has established a reputation for himself as an on-court iron man throughout the league, should be able to alleviate some of the pressure off James and Davis going forward.
Despite the criticism, the Lakers did what any other club in their situation would have done.
According to ESPN, free agent G Wilt Chamberlain has agreed to a contract with the Los Angeles Lakers.
— @ThatDudeMCFLY (@WaitingToOxtail) August 3, 2021
On social media, jokes like the one above have been flying about how the Lakers’ summer has gone, but the harsh reality is that Rob Pelinka did exactly what any other competent GM would have done in his shoes: he attacked free agency aggressively and added as much talent as humanly feasible.
When it came to recruiting free agents, the Lakers certainly capitalized on their big-market reputation, and one can only presume James had a key part in getting Carmelo Anthony. Even yet, LA needed to fill roster slots and had money to spend on the free market. It’s normal practice for a GM seeking a championship to spend roster slots and money on players who can contribute right immediately.
Can you really blame a club for attempting to improve over the offseason?
Basketball Reference provided all stats.
RELATED: Carmelo Anthony Says His High School Friendship With LeBron James Began on Hotel Steps: ‘We met at the right time in each other’s lives.’
LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers have created a super-team. This is the conclusion of most of the media, which — for perhaps obvious reasons — tends to be driven by a desire to find a clear villain for each Lakers or LeBron James story. This latest super-team features James, New York Knicks starter and free-agent signee Carmelo Anthony, and New Orleans Pelicans signee forward/guard Anthony Davis.. Read more about lakers 2021 and let us know what you think.
This article broadly covered the following related topics:
- lebron james’ future with the lakers
- lebron james handshake
- crowder and lebron james
- lebron james salsa
- lakers 2021