LeBron James Confirms He's Joining The Lakers

LeBron James Confirms He's Joining The Lakers

James chose to become a free agent after his second stint with the Cleveland Cavaliers in which he made good on his promise to bring a championship title to what is essentially his home town, having grown up in Akron, Ohio.

All of the buzz from the previous year that LeBron James would leave the Cleveland Cavaliers to sign with the Los Angeles Lakers became a reality Sunday night, July 1. The fourth year of the contract will come with a player option and marks the longest contract James has signed since signing a deal for six years with the Heat back in 2010.

Looking at his numbers, it's not hard to see why. Stephenson averaged 9.2 points per game on the Pacers last season. It was a stark contrast from eight years ago, when a poorly conceived TV special to announce his departure from Cleveland backfired and damaged James' image. He averaged 10.4 points on 46.2 percent shooting in a first-round loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Those are the kind of figures that can help transform the Lakers from Western Conference also-rans into one of the league's most compelling clubs. That list includes Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Josh Hart and Kyle Kuzma.

A short-term max deal makes sense.


Many expected LeBron James would leave the Cavaliers.

Getting back to annual title contention, which is a given with James, will be hard.

Here's the issue: The Cavaliers don't have a surefire route to expedite a rebuild.

Only on this occasion James leaves two years after delivering the city's first championship in more than 52 years, and with Cavs fans wishing him well and thanking him for an incredible run.

James will make $25.65 million next season. They were 48-11 against Eastern Conference clubs in the playoffs. If that figure holds this time around, the Wine and Gold's worth could shrink by more than $300 million. The views expressed therein are not necessarily those of stlucianewsonline.com, its sponsors or advertisers.

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