US basketball

LeBron James sticks with Lakers, Bronny gets rare guaranteed contract


This is AI generated summarization, which may have errors. For context, always refer to the full article.

LeBron James sticks with Lakers, Bronny gets rare guaranteed contract

FATHER-SON TANDEM. LeBron James during a Lakers photo shoot with his son and new teammate Bronny.


LeBron James signs a two-year maximum contract with the Lakers, who offered his son Bronny a deal unusual for a second-round draft pick

LeBron James, the NBA’s all-time leading scorer, has agreed to sign a two-year, $104-million maximum contract to return to the Los Angeles Lakers, according to multiple reports on Wednesday, July 3.

Both ESPN and The Athletic, citing sources, said four-time NBA champion James would have a player option for the 2025-2026 season and a no-trade clause.

James’ decision to stick with the Lakers, who drafted his son Bronny last week, was hardly a surprise as several outlets reported over the weekend that he intended to opt out of his $51.4-million player option for next season and seek a new deal with the team.

Even before the potential father-son pairing, all signs pointed to James playing his 22nd NBA season – seventh with Los Angeles.

The delay in hammering out the deal reportedly was a byproduct of James’ attempted recruiting mission, which appears to have been unsuccessful in landing another “impact” free agent.

ESPN reported James wanted to bring either Klay Thompson or DeMar DeRozan to Los Angeles. 

Thompson reportedly had a $20 million per season contract waiting from the Lakers, but he opted to join Kyrie Irving and Luka Doncic with the Western Conference champion Dallas Mavericks.

DeRozan, a Los Angeles native who played at Southern California, remained unsigned as of Wednesday morning. 

Reports linked him to the Sacramento Kings, but after James signed for the maximum, the Lakers would need to shed salary in a sign-and-trade agreement with the Chicago Bulls to acquire DeRozan.

The elder James, who turns 40 in December, expressed multiple times that he wanted to play with his son before ending his career. He watched from the back of the training facility as Bronny and first-round pick Dalton Knecht were formally introduced at a news conference on Tuesday.

LeBron averaged 25.7 points, 8.3 assists, and 7.3 rebounds in 71 games in the 2023-2024 season.

A four-time league MVP, LeBron became the first player in history to top 40,000 career points last season. He’s a 20-time All-Star and has career averages of 27.1 points, 7.5 rebounds, and 7.4 assists in 1,492 regular-season games.

Bronny gets guaranteed contract

The  Lakers broke NBA norms by guaranteeing the rookie contract for second-round pick Bronny.

LeBron’s son officially signed a four-year contract worth $7.9 million, an unusual step in the NBA for a second-round draft pick. 

The Lakers hold an option for the final season (2027-2028). 

Players selected in the second round are not required under the collective bargaining agreement to be guaranteed any portion of their salary at signing.

Bronny, a guard, played 25 games in college at Southern California after suffering cardiac arrest during a summer workout last July. He was seen as a fringe second-round pick and was highly expected to join his future Hall of Fame father in Los Angeles.

The 19-year-old Bronny had private workouts with only the Lakers and the Phoenix Suns before the draft.

Pelinka said in a statement, “In the history of the NBA, there’s never been a father and a son that have shared an NBA basketball court and that feels like something that could be magical… And NBA history should be made in a Lakers uniform.”

The Lakers’ other superstar, Anthony Davis, endorsed the club selecting his teammate’s son.

“He’s very good defensively,” Davis said of Bronny to ESPN. “He can read the floor very well. I think he’s a really good playmaker. I saw him work out a couple times besides the (Klutch Sports) pro day and working with a big – his reads, reading the defense, making the right passes – that was really impressive to me. I think he’s going to be fine, man. Obviously it’s a lot of pressure on him with his dad being who he is.” –

Add a comment

Sort by

There are no comments yet. Add your comment to start the conversation.

Summarize this article with AI

How does this make you feel?

Download the Rappler App!