Former key Los Angeles Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma has weighed in on the latest LeBron James rumors. Kuzma retweeted a quote from ESPN’s Brian Windhorst noting that James would consider leaving the Lakers in the future if it meant he could play on the same team as his son Bronny James.
The Wizards forward joked that Thunder general manager Sam Presti likely perked up when he heard this latest report.
“Presti about to sell the farm lol,” Kuzma tweeted on February 4.
Kuzma is of course familiar with the trade market as the Lakers dealt the popular forward to the Wizards last offseason as part of a blockbuster deal for Russell Westbrook. As a frame of reference, the Thunder could have as many as four first-round picks in the 2022 NBA Draft. Oklahoma City has the potential to receive the Pistons, Clippers and Suns picks in the upcoming draft, in addition to their own selection. The Thunder also have a chance to get picks from the Nuggets, Heat and Wizards in the 2023 NBA Draft.
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Would the Lakers Ever Consider Trading LeBron?
Much has been made about the Lakers attempting to trade Westbrook, but the team’s top assets continue to be James along with Anthony Davis. If the Lakers’ struggles continue, would the Lakers ever consider trading James, especially with injuries becoming more frequent for the superstar over the last two seasons?
James is under contract with the Lakers through the 2022-23 season, but it is reasonable to ponder if the team would consider dealing the star if the team got wind that the NBA legend may leave. Under the current rules, the soonest James’ son is eligible to play in the NBA is in 2024. Assuming James re-signs with the Lakers in 2023, this gives the star another two years after the 2022 season to potentially play in Los Angeles before even considering a move to join his son.
Trading James is also more complicated than simply looking at what improves the Lakers roster. James still likely has unreal trade value, but dealing one of the best NBA players of all-time is not the best look for future free agents. James’ close connection to Klutch Sports cannot be understated and trading the star without his consent would be problematic in their attempt to attract players to L.A. in the future.
LeBron Would ‘Pursue’ Options Outside the Lakers to Play With Bronny, Says Insider
Kuzma’s tweet was sparked by a February 3 feature story by Maxim’s Chris Sheridan who interviewed Windhorst about James’ future. The NBA insider believes James would be willing to leave the Lakers if it meant teaming up with his son.
“LeBron likes L.A., he likes raising his family in L.A., and his post-career businesses are in L.A.,” Windhorst noted. “But he’s made it very clear that he wants to play with his son. If that situation is available outside L.A., he’ll pursue it.”
Given the power of Klutch Sports, it is not out of the question that Bronny James could force his way to the Lakers. For now, the Lakers are tasked with improving their current roster, but if the team’s struggles continue, the trade rumors may be surrounding more players than just Westbrook.