Reuters/New York, United States
The Los Angeles Lakers will open training camp with both their superstars under contract.
The reigning NBA champions announced on Thursday that they re-signed LeBron James and Anthony Davis.
The club did not reveal financial details for either player, but multiple reports pegged Davis’ new five-year contract to be worth up to $190 mn. James signed a two-year, $85 mn contract extension through the 2022-23 season, agent Rich Paul of Klutch Sports told multiple media outlets Wednesday.
James, who turns 36 on December 30, averaged 25.3 points, an NBA-leading 10.2 assists and 7.8 rebounds in 67 games last season. The 16-time All-Star and four-time Most Valuable Player won his fourth NBA championship, earning Finals MVP honors against the Miami Heat.
“LeBron James is a transcendent basketball player, and human being,” Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka said in a statement. “LeBron put his trust in the Lakers in 2018, and now this contract extension paves the way for LeBron to further solidify his legacy as an all-time Lakers great.”
Davis, acquired in July 2019 from the New Orleans Pelicans, opted out of the final year of his contract — worth $28.7mn — to become a free agent in the days after the Lakers won the 2020 NBA championship in Orlando.
“In the Orlando bubble, Anthony Davis proved he is one of the game’s most complete and dominant two-way players,” Pelinka said. “Now, Lakers fans get to watch AD continue to grow and lead our franchise for years to come.”
The 27-year-old Davis can make $43.2mn in the final year of the deal (2024-25) if he opts to accept the player option in the max contract.
He was 10th in the NBA in scoring at 26.1 points per game and averaged 9.3 rebounds and 3.2 assists in 2019-20 with the Lakers. With the Pelicans in 2018-19, he averaged 25.9 points, 12.0 rebounds and 3.9 assists per game.
The No 1 pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, Davis spent seven seasons with the franchise before demanding a trade in January 2019 in hopes of being moved before the February trade deadline.
He was fined $50,000 by the NBA for his agent’s comments, which came after Davis made it clear he would turn down a max deal with the Pelicans in July 2019 — the timeline permitted under league rules — worth a maximum value of $240mn.
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