LeBron James was recently asked about the decision he will have to make regarding his player option for next season, and his response might concern fans of the Los Angeles Lakers.
LeBron James on if he knows what he’s going to do regarding his player option with the Lakers for next season: “No.”
— Jovan Buha (@jovanbuha) February 3, 2024
The Lakers picked up perhaps their best win of the season in their most recent game. They earned a nine-point road win over the Boston Celtics on Thursday and handed the team just its third home loss of the 2023-24 regular season. Part of what made the victory so impressive was the fact that Los Angeles was without its two best players in James and Anthony Davis.
Austin Reaves led the way for Los Angeles sans James and Davis and put together one of his top scoring performances in recent memory. He ended up with 32 points on 10-of-18 shooting from the field and 7-of-10 shooting from 3-point range across 35 minutes of action. Additionally, he contributed two rebounds and three assists.
Big man Jaxson Hayes also stepped up his game against the Celtics. In 34 minutes of playing time, he dropped 16 points, 10 rebounds, two assists and three steals while shooting 6-of-8 from the field and 4-of-5 from the charity stripe.
Los Angeles picked up its 25th win of the season by defeating Boston. But the team still does not own a top-eight seed in the Western Conference standings, as the Lakers sit as the conference’s No. 9 seed at 25-25 and are two games behind the Dallas Mavericks for the No. 8 seed.
The Lakers have been linked to numerous players in the weeks leading up to the trade deadline, including Atlanta Hawks guard Dejounte Murray and Brooklyn Nets players Spencer Dinwiddie, Royce O’Neale and Dorian Finney-Smith, but they now have less than a week to make a trade if they want to, considering the deadline is on Feb. 8.
Lakers fans should be rooting for the team to finish the 2023-24 regular season strong and make the playoffs, like the squad did a season ago. If the Lakers continue to hover around the .500 mark for the remainder of the season, it likely won’t bode well for the franchise’s chances of keeping James around beyond this season.