Report: Lakers haven’t internally reacted to LeBron James’ apparent attempts to apply pressure

Peter Dewey
3 Min Read
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers reportedly have not internally reacted to LeBron James’ apparent attempts to apply pressure to the organization ahead of the Feb. 8 trade deadline.

According to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst on “SportsCenter” on Sunday, the Lakers have not reacted to any of James’ moves.

“The Lakers to this point, from what I am told by sources, have not reacted to LeBron’s maneuvers, including wearing the [New York] Knicks towel last night, and they have kind of held firm in their talks,” Windhorst said. “The issue with the Lakers is they have only a couple of draft assets left, and they just want to hold onto them.”

The four-time champion recently wore a Knicks towel following the Lakers’ win over the Knicks on Saturday night, another potentially strategic move from the NBA’s all-time leading scorer to get his front office’s attention.

James has also made some interesting posts on the social media platform X (formerly known as Twitter) in recent days.

It’s possible that James’ actions have nothing to do with the Lakers, but it would be surprising if the All-Star forward were happy with how things have gone for the Lakers this season.

Even though Los Angeles has won back-to-back road games against the Knicks and Boston Celtics (the Boston win came without Anthony Davis or James in the lineup), the Lakers are just ninth in the Western Conference with a 26-25 record.

L.A. won the league’s In-Season Tournament earlier in the campaign, but the Lakers are in danger of ending up as a play-in team based on the way things currently stand.

Last season, the Lakers went from a play-in team (earning the No. 7 seed) all the way to the Western Conference Finals. However, the team hasn’t exactly built on the success of last season’s playoff run.

James is under contract with the Lakers through this season and has a player option for the 2024-25 season. He could opt out of his deal this coming offseason to become an unrestricted free agent.

Despite turning 39 years old during the 2023-24 season, James is still one of the league’s best players. He’s currently averaging 24.9 points, 7.4 rebounds and 7.6 assists per game while shooting 52.0 percent from the field and 39.8 percent from 3.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.