With Los Angeles Lakers media day on Monday, it is officially the start of the 2023-24 NBA season. Fans still have to get through training camp and the preseason but after a long summer, the purple and gold are finally back in action.
There were a lot of question marks about the future of the Lakers after Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals. LeBron James flirted with the idea of retirement and fans had no idea what the roster was going to look like for the 2023-24 season.
LeBron ultimately decided to keep his career going and was influenced by the moves that the Lakers made in the offseason. That was not the only driving factor in LeBron returning, though, as the NBA’s all-time leading scorer was able to rehab his injured foot and get it back to a comfortable place ahead of the season.
Lakers news: LeBron James is healthy going into 2023-24
LeBron dealt with a lingering foot issue last season that definitely had an impact on how he played. While LeBron ultimately toughed it out in the postseason, he had to pick his spots during the games as he lacked the same explosiveness to the basket that he traditionally would have.
His foot injury was one of the bigger storylines entering the offseason with speculation running rampant about him potentially needing surgery. LeBron told reporters at the end of last season that if he did require surgery he wouldn’t tell the media.
LeBron did confirm on media day that he completely tore the tendon in his foot against Dallas last season and that he is confident in it moving forward.
Whether or not LeBron had surgery is unclear as there were no concrete updates over the summer. Whatever LeBron did obviously worked as he heads into the 2023-24 season with a clean bill of health.
While this is great news, the Lakers still need to be cautious about how they handle LeBron’s workload this season. LeBron is entering his 21st season in the league and injuries take a lot longer to heal in year 21 than they did in year 10.
But at the very least, this saga around LeBron and his lingering foot issue appears to be something of the past. Every Lakers fan can breathe a sigh of relief.