“Not very long,” James responded when asked how much longer he plans to play. “Not very long. I’m on the other side, obviously, of the hill. So I’m not going to play another 21 years, that’s for damn sure. But not very long. I don’t know what or when that door will close as far as when I retire, but I don’t have much time left.”

A report in February indicated that James plans to seek a new three-year contract from L.A. worth “nine figures,” so he doesn’t appear close to ending his career. He holds a $51.4MM player option for next season and has the chance to become a free agent this summer.

James has appeared in 65 regular season games this season and is likely to reach his highest total since playing all 82 for Cleveland in 2017/18. However, he’s still dealing with the effects of a torn tendon in his right foot that he suffered in February of 2023.

“My foot has felt a lot better,” James said. “I didn’t have much time to really rep a lot last year because I had to make sure I could be on the floor running around or [not] putting much pounding of my foot on the floor. I’ve had a lot of opportunity to get on the floor. You probably see me before every game out on the floor, working on my game, working on my craft. So that’s helped out a lot, too. And just trying to stay consistent with my shot, do the same shot every time. And just work. Just work, work, work, work.”

There’s more on the Lakers:

  • Gabe Vincent returned Sunday after missing 46 games following knee surgery, per Khobi Price of The Orange County Register. Vincent, who played 14 minutes off the bench, is hoping to work his way back to the point that he can help the team in the playoffs. “I’m going to let them take care of it,” Vincent said. “I got faith in the training staff and the coaching staff and they have faith in me, they put me in there for whatever minutes they do and hopefully I continue to build trust with these guys in this.”
  • Jarred Vanderbilt, who has been sidelined since early February with a sprained left foot, did extensive on-court work before Sunday’s game, Price adds. He has been available for just 29 games, but hopes to be back before the end of the season.
  • Returning to Brooklyn for the first time since being traded in February, Spencer Dinwiddie said “everything” was misreported about his exit from the Nets, relays Brian Lewis of The New York Post. “I know [the media] obviously have a job to do. And I know that people say what they say from other places, whether it be organization, other positions or whatever. So sometimes obviously, as a player, things get mischaracterized or your voice gets drowned out,” Dinwiddie said. “That’s just kind of the situation I ended up in.”