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Why LeBron James chose the Los Angeles Lakers in free agency

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LeBron James announced he will sign a four-year, $154 million deal with the Los Angeles Lakers through his agency, Klutch Sports .

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“LeBron James, four time NBA MVP, three time NBA finals MVP, fourteen time NBA All Star, and two time Olympic gold medalist has agreed to a four year, $154 million contract with the Los Angeles Lakers,” the hyphen-missing press release read.

Here are three reasons why LeBron James joined the Lakers, according to two people with knowledge of the negotiations.

  1. James and his family (wife Savannah, sons LeBron Jr. and Bryce and daughter Zhuri) are excited to live in Los Angeles fulltime. He has two homes there and has spent previous offseasons there.

  2. James believes the Lakers are in position – with some of the players they have now – to build a team that can contend for a championship soon. Also, James was not adamant that another All-Star, such as Kawhi Leonard or Paul George, had to join the Lakers for him to sign with the Lakers. He understands they can build and create a contender with him there.

  3. If James left Cleveland, it would be for an iconic franchise, and the Lakers are that with their 16 NBA championships and Hall of Famers who have played for the franchise, including some of the game’s all-time greats: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson, Jerry West, Elgin Baylor and Wilt Chamberlain. James’ agent, Rich Paul, met with Philadelphia – another storied franchise – which worked hard Sunday to reach a deal with San Antonio to acquire Leonard and then convince James to join, a person familiar with the situation told USA TODAY Sports. But the Sixers never made serious traction with the Spurs. The person requested anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly about trade talks.

 

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