According to ESPN.com's Brian Windhorst, some NBA executives believe the L.A. Lakers are going to target the Miami Heat's LeBron James when he becomes a free agent in 2014, because of reasons.
The Lakers are very good at building championship contenders, like they did this off-season when they traded for Dwight Howard, and Steve Nash. Obviously, the Heat are not good at that thing.
Also, Kobe Bryant once said he's going to retire in two years.
CONNECTING THE DOTS YET???
Basically, according to unnamed and unspecified NBA executives, and a guy who used to cover the Cleveland Cavaliers, LeBron James will go to the Lakers because they're the Lakers.
In July 2013, Bryant's $30.4 million will expire. As will Pau Gasol's $19.2 million, Metta World Peace's $7.7 million, Steve Blake's $4 million and Jordan Hill's $3.5.
So, since all these contracts are expiring at the same time, CLEARLY LeBron is L.A. bound.
"It's not a mistake that all those deals end the same year Kobe's does. They have probably been planning for their next phase for a while," said one general manager. "The Busses and [Lakers GM] Mitch [Kupchak] are always thinking about the next big deal."
One General Manager is right.
The Busses are always thinking about the next big deal. That, along with the expiring contracts, are reasons they will swoop in and take James from Pat Riley. All that next big deal thinking and all them expiring Laker contracts are going to disorient Riles and he'll forget to re-sign his franchise player, so the Heat are totally screwed.
"I knew how much the Buss family, Jeanie and so forth, wanted to turn it around," Bryant told CBSSports.com. "I've seen them do it. They rebuilt first by picking up Shaq. ... Then that era was over and they rebuilt again. And now they've rebuilt again. I've seen them do it before.
The Lakers like to win, unlike the other NBA teams. So there's another reason.
The Heat have LeBron signed through 2016, but he can opt out of his contract in either 2014 or 2015.
According to Windhorst, "observers around the league" expect LeBron to do just that so he can position himself to make more money.
"LeBron is the best player in the league and he's making less than the max, so unless he's seriously hurt he's going to opt out in 2014, if only because I would assume he wants and deserves to get a true max," said one league executive. "Even if the Heat win the next two titles there's a feeling that LeBron is going to become a free agent in two years no matter what."
"Observers around the league" and One League Executive are right.
LeBron is the best player in the NBA and is making less than the max, and so his becoming a free agent in two years is not even a question. Therefore, boom, Lakers.
Windhorst also says LeBron and Chris Paul are totally best friends, and will want to team up somewhere. And where better than the Lakers?
Meanwhile, keep an eye on Chris Paul, LeBron's best friend in the NBA. James has wanted to team up with CP3 for seven years or more. In 2005, when Paul was about to be drafted, James asked the Cavs to attempt to move up to get Paul, but the Cavs did not have the assets to pull off such a trade.
LeBron to the Lakers is a real thing because of Chris Paul. NATCH.
In any case, the Lakers are positioning themselves to be major players again, post-Bryant. Based on their long track record, there's no reason to believe they won't aim for the biggest star possible. In 2014, that likely will be LeBron James.
Yup. No reason not to think the best player in the NBA won't be receiving calls for his services once he's a free agent. Better enjoy him now, Heat fans. Before LeBron dons the gold and purple. Don't fight it. It's inevitable.
A bunch of unnamed NBA execs and his being pals with Chris Paul makes it so.