Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James made headlines during NBA All-Star Weekend when he confirmed that his last year in the league will be playing with his son Bronny if he makes it in the NBA. LeBron confirmed what we all suspected and said that he would do anything it takes to play with his son and that winning at that point would not matter.
Bronny James is eligible to be drafted in the 2024 NBA Draft and his current draft status is unclear. As it stands right now, it does not seem like Bronny is on pace to be a first-round pick but his senior year of high school and college will ultimately decide that. As it stands right now, Bronny is the 43rd-ranked prospect in his high school class on ESPN.
Unless Bronny’s value shoots up to that of a lottery pick in 2024, the Los Angeles Lakers would be foolish to not draft LeBron’s son to keep him in LA until he retires. I get it, that is in two years and LeBron may not be the same player. But the important thing to remember is him saying he will do anything it takes to play with his son.
The Los Angeles Lakers drafting Bronny James would lead to more titles.
The Los Angeles Lakers have always been known to take care of their superstars and this would be the ultimate way to take care of LeBron. There could be a handshake agreement between LeBron and the Lakers: LA drafts Bronny and LeBron takes the veteran minimum to play with his son.
Why is this important? Well, it opens up massive amounts of cap space for the Lakers to go and get another star. It is absolutely fair to question Anthony Davis as the future franchise player of the Lakers and the Lakers are going to need to get him a running mate post-LeBron.
However, it might be hard to get that running mate if LeBron outright leaves. Why? The public image of the Lakers may not look great. The team really messed up the Russell Westbrook situation and essentially ended a two-year title window unless they can somehow pawn him off this offseason and pray they can add more depth.
There is a chance that in two years the Lakers are not a favorable destination, especially if LeBron gets fed up and leaves the team after next season, prompting Anthony Davis to be the next disgruntled star and leave the team.
That is why Bronny is so important. The Lakers tell LeBron before the 2023-24 season that they have intents on drafting Bronny in 2024. LeBron then re-signs with the Lakers on a big one-year deal for the 2023-24 season, agreeing to then take the minimum if the Lakers hold their promise the following year.
LeBron stays, Anthony Davis is not upset and then the 2024 free-agent class can come sign with the Lakers and take the torch from LeBron and open a new championship window with Anthony Davis. Said star would get one year with LeBron James (who will still be productive regardless). If LeBron is even 60% of what he is now in two years then adding another superstar could be a title lock.
There are some older free agents that the Lakers could pursue like Kawhi Leonard or Klay Thompson, but the big-money signing would be Devin Booker. Booker is already making huge leaps and is a noted big fan of Kobe Bryant. Who better to carry the torch and open another title window in LA with a dominant big man than Devin Booker?
Of course, a lot can happen between now and then, but Bronny James is the key.