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New Orleans Pelicans star Anthony Davis heard the talk from LeBron James and how James would love to have Davis on the Lakers, as Zach Lowe of ESPN reported.
According to Lowe, Davis was flattered. According to Davis, nothing has changed. His focus remains on the here and now.
“I don’t really care,” Davis told Lowe of James’ comments Wednesday after the visiting Pelicans lost to the Milwaukee Bucks.
“Obviously, it’s cool to hear any high-caliber player say they want to play with me. But my job is to turn this team around. If we’re 15-17, that means I’m not doing my job.”
Davis was responding to comments by James, who told ESPN it “would be incredible” if the Lakers were able to trade for the Pelicans big man.
“That would be amazing, like, duh,” James told ESPN. “That would be incredible.”
Interestingly, some around the NBA suspect that the question about Davis was manufactured — by James himself, with the goal being to put a bug in the Lakers’ ear and get the ball rolling on the franchise finding a second star.
But Davis has reportedly told the Pelicans he has no desire to go anywhere and the Pelicans have said they will not be trading him. Instead, they are actually searching for help for Davis.
Davis does is not eligible for free agency until 2020. So unless he suddenly and uncharacteristically demands a trade, the Pelicans can hang onto him for all of this season and next.
“This summer, he will be eligible for a special five-year, $239 million supermax extension that the Pelicans can offer a year in advance of his unrestricted free agency,” Lowe noted. “The NBA and its players’ union introduced the supermax in the most recent collective bargaining talks in part to help small-market teams retain superstars.”
That said, Davis is represented by Rich Paul, the agent who also happens to represent James. Paul and Davis have reportedly met with the Pelicans to assure them of his desire to remain with the club.
But this is the NBA, and in the NBA, you just never know. Guys have a way of teaming up.
For now, though, Davis and the Pelicans are making it loud and clear that they are happy together.