LeBron James Reveals Which Two Teams He Considered Before Signing With Lakers
The Los Angeles Lakers managed to get LeBron James on board, but his decision to sign a four-year contract with them wasn’t an easy one. The four-time MVP also had other options to consider.
In a recent interview, James revealed that he contemplated joining the Philadelphia 76ers or the Houston Rockets before ultimately landing with the Lakers.
“I definitely thought long and hard about the possibilities of lining up alongside Ben (Simmons) and (Joel) Embiid (in Philadelphia), or lining up alongside (James) Harden and Chris (Paul) (in Houston),” James said. “I just felt like at this point in my career, the ultimate for me — just like when I went to Miami, everyone kind of looks at me joining a superteam, but if people look at it, I think Miami was (47-35) the year before I joined that team and you can look at the Lakers’ record — so I like the challenge of being able to help a team get to someplace they haven’t been in quite a while.”
After missing the playoffs in each of the last five seasons, and failing to win more than 27 games in four straight seasons, the Lakers put their hopes on James to help them return to prominence, especially in the Western Conference, where the Golden State Warriors have reached four straight NBA Finals.
“Obviously, the Lakers haven’t made the playoffs in a few years,” James said, “but the Lakers organization and the historical franchise matches up there with all the greats — you can look at the Cowboys, and you can look at the Patriots, you can look at Manchester United, the Boston Celtics — these are historical franchises, and for me to be a part of that, I think it’s a great moment for not only me but for my family and for the history of basketball in general.”
It would be interesting to see whether the Lakers will become instant championship contenders with James’ leadership.
While LeBron has been to eight consecutive NBA Finals in the Eastern Conference while playing for the Miami Heat and Cleveland Cavaliers, his job won’t be easy, considering that the West is far more stacked and Los Angeles has a ton of players who still are developing. It might take some time for LA to hit its stride.