It remains highly unlikely that we’ll see a LeBron James trade from the Los Angeles Lakers this summer.
While the Lakers are coming off a 49-loss season and King James’ future in Southern California is in doubt, it would be a bad look for the team to move off the face of its franchise.
With that said, one unnamed NBA executive just recently broached the subject of a potential LeBron James trade to the Cleveland Cavaliers.
“I think you’d have Cleveland, obviously. It’s hard to see a deal that makes sense, though,” the executive said. “You could start with Jarrett Allen, especially if you think that (Evan) Mobley is your center down the line. And then Collin Sexton as a sign-and-trade piece, but that might have to be a separate deal because of the luxury tax, a third team involved. And a young piece like Isaac Okoro.”Unnamed executive to Sean Deveney of Heavy.com
For the Lakers, this would be all about blowing it up and starting anew with the understanding that they can’t compete in the Western Conference with this current roster. However, there’s some question as to whether this would even make sense for the Cavaliers.
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Should the Cleveland Cavaliers look into a LeBron James trade?
King James starred for the Cavs from 2003-10 before leaving for the Miami Heat. He played four seasons in Miami before returning to the Cavaliers during the summer of 2014 — leading that organization to four consecutive NBA Finals appearences ahead of a move to Southern California in 2018.
For most, the idea of bringing LeBron back to conclude his career where it started might make sense. From an on-court perspective, it really doesn’t seem to be a good fit.
Cleveland is coming off a surprising 44-win season and boasts one of the most-talented young cores in the NBA. This includes two first-time All-Stars in that of Darius Garland and the aforementioned Jarrett Allen. Stud youngster Evan Mobley is also coming off a tremendous rookie season.
Why would the Cavaliers look to blow this up by trading for a 37-year-old James? It just doesn’t make too much sense.
Will the Los Angeles Lakers look into a LeBron James trade?
Lakers owner Jeanie Buss made it clear following the 2021-22 season that she is alright with James opting against signing an extension this summer. If he were to let it play out, James would become a free agent in the summer of 2023.
There’s no guarantee that he would re-sign with the Lakers given the four-time NBA Champion’s stance that he’d like to finish his career playing with his son.
As we saw throughout the 2021-22 campaign, these Lakers are nowhere near legit conference title contenders. James himself is getting longer in the tooth and has missed 53 games over the past two seasons. Russell Westbrook is an enigma with an albatross of a contract and is coming off a disastrous first season with the Lakers. Meanwhile, Anthony Davis has been an injury-plagued enigma throughout the past two seasons, too.
Even then, the Lakers wouldn’t be able to justify it to their fan base to pull off a LeBron James trade. Said deal would make the Lakers irrelevant on the broader NBA stage.