Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James wants the organization to provide the 2022-23 Lakers with some reinforcements, and he’s not alone.
According to a new report, James and other core players on L.A.’s roster would like to see the organization trade away its 2027 and 2029 first-round draft picks in order to improve the current Lakers roster.
“Lacking young, enticing assets and draft capital to strengthen the roster, the Lakers are only armed with two first-round picks in 2027 and 2029, respectively,” wrote Chris Haynes of Bleacher Report.
“James, who turns 38 next month and is in Year 20 of his NBA career, does not want to waste a season of his high-level playing days in hopes of incoming reinforcements for the 2023-24 campaign, sources say. Other core players on the roster would likewise prefer those picks to be used to elevate this year’s team.”
It’s no surprise that James and some of his key teammates want a chance to contend this season. With the way L.A.’s roster is currently constructed, the pieces needed to contend simply aren’t there.
In James’ case especially, it makes perfect sense that he doesn’t want to waste another season of his career. The 18-time All-Star will soon turn 38, and his age is starting to become a bit more noticeable in his play on the court.
However, the future Hall of Famer has plenty left to offer, and he’s still a very productive player. So far this season, he’s averaging 24.9 points, 8.8 rebounds and 6.9 assists per contest.
The Lakers are 2-9 on the season. Their only two wins so far were sandwiched by a five-game losing streak and four-game losing streak, with the four-game skid still active.
L.A. will look to end its current losing streak when it faces the Sacramento Kings at home on Friday.
It remains to be seen if the Lakers will end up trading their 2027 and 2029 first-round picks this season. If they opt against that idea and instead keep their current roster intact, they will likely miss the playoffs for the second straight season, wasting another season of James’ sunset years.
Of course, there are ways for the Lakers to shake up their roster without trading those picks. There has been some chatter about the idea of L.A. trading Anthony Davis away, which would be a stunning development.
A Davis trade would have the potential to bring back several key players and give the Lakers a virtually unrecognizable roster.
L.A.’s front office has some extremely difficult decisions to make, but it sounds like James and some of his teammates know what they want: for the Lakers to get something done.