Lebron James, aka “The King”, will be donning purple and gold next season. He has agreed to a four year, $154 million dollar deal with the Los Angeles Lakers. Ranked by Sports Illustrated magazine as the most influential athlete in the world in 2017, James brings instant excitement to a storied Lakers franchise that has become irrelevant over the past few seasons.
Earvin “Magic” Johnson, arguably the most famous Laker of all time, became the team general manager and president of basketball operations in 2017. This was the start of bringing buzz back to the Los Angeles franchise. They have not made the playoffs since the 2012-13 season as Kobe Bryant was reaching the end of his career.
“I’m not feeling pressure,” Magic said to reporters. “I’ve been to seven NBA finals. That’s pressure. But I want this franchise to be the showtime Lakers again. If I can’t land some of these marquee players that are free agents in the next two offseason’s, I’ve failed as a GM. I’ll fire myself.”
King James had several teams vying for him. The Philadelphia 76ers released a series of billboards during the season trying to convince Lebron to come there.
Unlike his infamous “Decision” to leave Cleveland for Miami, fans in Cleveland were much more appreciative to the King for leaving this time. James returned to the Cleveland Cavaliers and delivered the city their first NBA championship in 2016.
The biggest challenge for James is to overcome the two-time defending champion Golden State Warriors, whom he has faced off with in the NBA finals four years in a row.
The Warriors added Demarcus “Boogie” Cousins during the offseason.
They will be the first team to have a five man starting lineup that were selected to the all-star team the previous season.