He does not leave: LeBron James affirms that he will not retire from the NBA and will play his 21st season
Photo: Harry How/Getty Images
LeBron James, after leaving some questions in the past playoffs about a possible withdrawal, confirmed this Wednesday that he will play in the 2023-2024 NBA season, which will mean his 21st season in the league.
“The day I can't give it my all on the track is the day I'll be finished. Fortunately for you that day is not today."LeBron joked at the ESPYS ceremony, the awards that the ESPN network gives every year to recognize the best in sport.
The Lakers star will thus become the sixth player in NBA history to play 21 seasons, a list in which he appears along with Kevin Garnett, Dirk Nowitzki, Robert Parish, Kevin Willis and Vince Carter (the latter has the absolute record with 22 courses in the elite).
LeBron will be the fifth highest paid player for the NBA season at $46.9 million. The only player to top $50 million is Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors.
LeBron, who will turn 39 in December, assured in May after losing in the West final with the Lakers against the Denver Nuggets that he had “a lot to think about” regarding his future.
These statements at a press conference caused a stir on social media and ESPN journalist Dave McMenamin later spoke with LeBron to clarify what he meant and copied the following transcript on his Twitter account:
– Question: When you said you wanted to think about things, what thread should we draw from all this?
– Answer: If I want to continue playing.
– Q: In the next year?
– A: Yes.
– Q: Would you leave it?
–A: I have to think about it.
Since then, there has been no further word on a possible withdrawal and the Lakers have operated in offices cWith the idea that LeBron would return at least one more year with those in purple and gold.
The leading scorer in NBA history has said on several occasions in the past that he would like to play in the best league on the planet with his son Bronny, who is now in college basketball with USC.
The Lakers experienced a roller coaster last season with a disastrous start (2-10), the departure of Russell Westbrook, a fabulous comeback with new signings like D'Angelo Russell or Rui Hachimura and the growth of Austin Reaves, and some very exciting playoffs in which they eliminated the Memphis Grizzlies and the Golden State Warriors.
For the next course LeBron and Anthony Davis will continue as benchmarks for some Lakers who have ensured the continuity of Russell, Hachimura and Reaves this summer and that they have made interesting additions such as Gabe Vincent, Taurean Prince and Cam Reddish.
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