Kevin Love Makes Bold Prediction on Lebron James Leaving Lakers

LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers

Getty LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers

LeBron James’ future is always a major topic of discussion for NBA fans, fuelled by the superstar’s preference for short-term contracts, allowing him to renegotiate terms yearly or bi-yearly.

Luckily, LeBron is contracted to the Los Angeles Lakers through the 2022-23 NBA season, after which he will become an unrestricted agent. Yet, the Lakers are currently taking stock of their options as they try to fix the issues of this past season so that they can return to championship contention immediately.

LeBron is coming off another fantastic individual season, and it’s highly unlikely his short-term future lies away from Tinseltown, but, as is always the case with ‘The King’, his long-term future is far murkier.

“I feel like it would be cool if it was one of those things where it was a one-game type of thing. So, if people asked, ‘where did you finish your career’ he can be like, ‘oh, I finished it in Cleveland.’

Obviously, I know he wants to have a Kobe-type exit, where he scores 60 and does his thing. And he probably will. Where it will be, nobody knows. But, at the end of the day, I think retiring a Cav, for him, the city, Akron, Ohio, I mean, that statue, I can’t wait till that goes up, I’ll be there,” Kevin Love told Taylor Rooks during an interview with Bleacher Report.

If LeBron were to end up back with the Cavaliers before the curtain came down on his career, it would mark his third stint with the team and create a storybook ending for arguably the greatest player to ever step on the hardwood.

LeBron Was Lakers Best Player This Season

Despite his ever-increasing age, LeBron was by far and away the Lakers’ best player this season when healthy. In his 19th NBA season, the superstar forward averaged 30.3 points, 6.2 assists, and 8.2 rebounds per game while shooting an efficient 52.4% from the field and 35.9% from three.

With numbers like those, and an average of 37 minutes per game, it’s hard to see LeBron calling time on his career anytime soon, especially if he feels he’s still in a position to challenge for another championship before calling it a day. Of course, LeBron’s desire to play alongside his son is well documented, and given his current fitness and production levels, there is no reason to believe LeBron won’t achieve the final goal on his list.

Still, the Lakers will eventually want to go younger, as their squad struggled to cope with the number of aging legs in the rotation, missing the playoffs as a result. And while Lebron won’t be on the chopping block anytime soon, there’s a chance his next contract doesn’t come from the purple and gold – although that chance is rather slim.

The Coaching Search Continues

After parting ways with Frank Vogel at the end of the season, the Lakers underwent a thorough search for a new head coach, and that search is still ongoing. We’ve seen countless names linked with the team in recent weeks, spanning from Phil Jackson to the more realistic option of Quin Snyder – should he walk away from his role with the Utah Jazz.

Oh, and who can forget the fleeting rumors of the Lakers targeting the Boston Celtics President of Basketball Operations, Brad Stevens, when the role first opened up.

Terry Stotts, the former Portland Trail Blazers head coach, has also been interviewed for the gig, and it seems like Milwaukee Bucks assistant Darvin Ham has piqued the Lakers’ interest too.

“Lakers vice president of basketball operations and general manager Rob Pelinka made it clear that the team was going to take their time with the search and that one of the most important coaching qualities would be gravitas. That suggests a coach with experience, but several of the first-year candidates they’ve been linked to are former players that are known to command respect,” Jovan Buha recently wrote for The Athletic.

LeBron might have another year on his deal, and the Lakers’ next head coaching hire could be between re-signing with the franchise in the summer or looking for a new place to call home – only time will tell.


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