It may not come as a surprise but it’s looking like Anthony Davis has come to a decision regarding his Los Angeles Lakers contract. According to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, Davis will opt-out of his contract but will re-sign with the Lakers:
Davis plans to opt out of his $28.7 million player option and re-sign with the Lakers, sources tell The Athletic. Davis and his agent, Rich Paul, will hold meetings in the coming weeks to discuss the situation and the contract term that is most sensible for Davis.
There have been months of speculation and Davis has hinted at his plan a number of times but it was notable that he hadn’t signed an extension yet. It’s been reported for months that he was planning on staying in Los Angeles but this is the most definitive report yet. Davis just won a championship with the Lakers and has a very strong relationship with LeBron James. There was never a real chance he was going to leave the team but the Lakers have been burned before. Fortunately, that’s not going to happen this time.
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Insider Gives Insight on Contract Details
With the news that Davis intends to re-sign with the Lakers, it will likely still take time for a contract to get finalized. According to Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times, NBA executives believe that the big man’s best option is to keep his deal short.
“Most NBA executives, who are not authorized to speak publicly on Davis’ situation, believe the seven-time All-Star forward’s best course is to opt out and sign a two-year deal with a player option for the second season,” Turner wrote.
There’s no doubt that the Lakers would like to lock Davis up long-term but superstar players aren’t doing that as much lately. Per Charania, Davis has three realistic contract options:
Two years, $68,103,360: One-plus-one, player option in year two.
Three years, $106,084,080: Two-plus-one, player option in year three. This deal would bring Davis to 10 years of service before 2022 free agency and thus make him eligible for the 35 percent max contract. Using a $125 million cap projection in 2022, Davis’ max deal would be worth $253.75 million over five years, or $196 million over four years.
Four years, $146,684,160: Three-plus-one, player option in year four. Using a potential $131.25 million cap in 2023, Davis would be in line for a $266.4 million max over five years or $205.8 million over four years.
Regardless of what Davis decides to do, he’s going to be making a lot of money very soon.
What This Means for the Lakers
There didn’t seem to ever be any doubt that Davis would come back to the Lakers but it should definitely come as a relief that he plans to re-sign. The NBA is a crazy league and nobody really knows exactly what’s going on in Davis’ head. It was clear very quickly that he was a great fit with the Lakers and there’s probably no better team out there for him right now.
If Charania’s report does come to fruition, this is a big day for Los Angeles. Having Davis locked up for at least one more year means that the Lakers are title contenders once again for the upcoming season. LeBron and Davis are the NBA’s best duo and it would’ve been painful for Los Angeles to see them break up so soon.