Sports media’s LeBron James expert (of sorts) is making some interesting comments about The King this week.
On the latest episode of “The Hoop Collective” podcast, Brian Windhorst of ESPN expressed skepticism about James’ future with the Los Angeles Lakers beyond this season.
“I don’t know what’s gonna happen with LeBron in 2025,” said Windhorst, per Sports Illustrated. “I feel like LeBron is gonna play next year, but I don’t know if it’s gonna be for the Lakers.”
Senior NBA insider Windhorst has famously covered James for over two decades now, dating all the way back to the forward’s time at St. Vincent-St. Mary High School. Thus, Windhorst’s word has more weight than most when it comes to James.
James, now 39, did flirt with retirement (though largely unconvincingly) following the Lakers’ playoff exit last season. He will have greater control over his future this summer, as he holds a $51.4 million player option for 2024-25. Should James decline that option, that would pave the way for him to potentially leave the Lakers and maybe even join whatever team drafts his son Bronny James, who is draft-eligible this year.
The Lakers will obviously make a very strong push to keep James around for what would be a seventh campaign in L.A.. But the team is struggling again this season, sitting at just .500 halfway into the season despite James and Anthony Davis both offering elite production and wide-scale availability. James has also had some concerning remarks in recent weeks that may signal an increasing loss of confidence in the Lakers.