By: Kylan Watson
In 2017, when Magic Johnson took over as the President of Basketball Operations for the Los Angeles Lakers, a lot of Lakers fans had hope again and Johnson was making some huge promises to Lakers fans. Promises that included: signing some big-name free agents in the future, and that the bad seasons were over in LA. Well in a year the Lakers improved by nine games, and Johnson was able to get a four-year $153.3 million-dollar deal to bring LeBron James to LA. This was a huge acquisition for the Lakers and may signal a return to the playoffs for one of the NBA’s most storied franchises.
The Lakers have been an awful team to watch since Kobe Bryant retired in 2016. The Lakers had a 35-47 record and were a bottom-three team in the Western Conference. With the acquisition of James though it seems like the Lakers may be a playoff-bound team once again.
LeBron James coming to the Lakers not only adds some prestige back to the Lakers, but it also brings a promise of renewed dominance in the Western Conference. The Lakers have not had a dynamic superstar on their roster since Kobe Bryant. Now they have arguably the best player in the world on their roster.
Playing with James should help better develop the young core of players the Lakers have. James makes every player he plays with better and Lonzo Ball, Kyle Kuzma, and Brandon Ingram should flourish playing with LeBron. They should be able to benefit from wide-open shots and his wisdom.
Now the Lakers are a couple players away from really contending in the West, but they should be able to get the players they need, with the acquisition of James. Many players in the NBA would love to play with him, and the Lakers will be able to benefit from having James on their roster.
Many people do not understand why James would choose to come to LA. It’s probably not the best fit basketball wise for him. However, his decision may signal that he trusts Magic Johnson, to make the Lakers the best franchise in the NBA again. Now if Johnson was not only able to secure James’ loyalty, but also was able to get his trust that speaks volumes. LeBron does not trust many executives in the NBA. The only other executive that had his trust was Pat Riley.
Magic Johnson in his first full year in LA, was able to get LeBron James to come to LA for the next four years. Johnson has not only fulfilled his promise to Lakers fans, but he also may have brought back “Showtime “to the Staples Center.