LeBron James‘ decision to sign a contract extension with the Lakers isn’t related to Anthony Davis‘ free agency, sources tell ESPN’s Brian Windhorst. As Windhorst explains, if James hadn’t negotiated an extension and Davis signed a one-plus-one deal in free agency, the two superstars could’ve reached the open market together in 2021 and the Lakers could’ve explored ways to re-sign both players will adding another star.
However, James wasn’t interested in going that route, according to Windhorst, who says the reigning Finals MVP is confident the team will continue to spend and attract top talent. LeBron prioritized his own long-term earnings over helping the Lakers remain as flexible as possible.
Davis, meanwhile, is still mulling how to structure his contract and is making his decision independent of James, writes Windhorst. The star big man is also looking to maximize his future earnings and is researching scenarios and possible cap increases as he considers the best way to do so.
Here’s more from around the Pacific:
- After signing a maximum-salary extension with the Kings last week, De’Aaron Fox said on Tuesday that he loves playing in Sacramento and wants to help turn the team into a contender, says James Ham of NBC Sports California. “I want to be able to bring wins to this city, bring wins to this franchise,” Fox said. “I’m very happy that we have that commitment and we have that trust in each other. But now, it’s about winning. I think that’s what it’s always been about.”
- In a separate story for NBC Sports California, Ham writes that the Kings‘ relatively quiet offseason was one factor that motivated Bogdan Bogdanovic to leave Sacramento. “Since (the Kings) didn’t do any moves in the offseason, I was like, ‘OK, I’m ready to leave,'” Bogdanovic told reporters today. “And I was really excited about Atlanta.”
- Asked about the possibility of signing Paul George and Luke Kennard to extensions, Clippers president of basketball operations Lawrence Frank didn’t offer any info on possible contract talks, but said the team views both players as “long-term Clippers,” according to Andrew Greif of The Los Angeles Times (Twitter link).