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The Los Angeles Lakers have been the talk of the NBA since July 1 when LeBron James decided to take his talents to LA to further build upon his legacy.
In that time, the Lakers have gone from being a young, up-and-coming team with promising players, to now being thrust into the up-the-minute media mill in conversation.
The past four days have been none other than utter chaos around the league that any daytime soap opera couldn’t hold a candle to. The primary bombshell in this is New Orleans Pelicans superstar, Anthony Davis, making it known to the front office he wants the first ticket out of town to the City of Angels to pair next to James.
Making this all happen? James’ agency, Klutch Sports, which is headed up by longtime friend, Rich Paul.
It’s no surprise this all came about being that Davis purchased a multi-million dollar mansion in LA this past summer, fired his former agent, and signed with Klutch Sports all in the name of eventually leaving the nest of New Orleans, and continuing his rite of passage under the bright lights of Hollywood.
The cost of doing this business was a fine of $50,000 laid out by the NBA, which is the equivalent of me ordering a veggie burrito from El Pollo Loco (I miss that place). Of course Davis will likely not pay a dime of this fine as Paul will see to it his client is covered, but the manner in which this has taken place is what makes the NBA a much more desired place for big-time athletes compared to the NFL (we won’t discuss that right now though).
James has flexed his muscle in ways even Magic Johnson couldn’t see coming. It’s nothing new to acquiesce to superstars of James’ caliber, but he again has proven wherever he goes (outside of Miami), he is the de facto general manager, coach, heck, pretty much runs the organization.
The Lakers are doing any and everything they can to please James and see to it he lives out the duration of his contract winning multiple championships and doing so in showtime fashion.
Will it work? Will it all be worth it?
The latter is easier to answer as the move of bringing in James increased Lakers’ ticket sales over 400 percent. Adding Davis and the possible addition of other stars such as Kawhi Leonard, Klay Thompson, and Kyrie Irving would make the Lakers must-see TV on a nightly basis.
But just in any business decision, there’s always risk. As we’ve seen already this season, James, who typically holds iron man status, went down with a groin injury on Christmas day from doing nothing more than falling down. At 34-years-old, and now in his 16th season, history tells us at some point his body will betray him and we may be cheated out of the nightly highlight reels he’s given us for so many years.
Not to mention the haul the Lakers will have to give in order to land Davis alone. With reports that conversations to acquire Davis must begin with Lonzo Ball, Kyle Kuzma, Brandon Ingram, Ivica Zubac, and picks — that is a hefty price for players who all have at minimum very respectable floors — if not all potential All-Stars in terms of their standing in this league.
So, it’s safe to say Laker fans and NBA fans will be on the proverbial edge of their seats until this deal gets done (if at all), and just to make it more appealing, why not wait until 2:59 p.m. on Feb. 7. That would be the James way.