LeBron James shifted the basketball axis when he chose to sign with the Los Angeles Lakers.
LeBron appeared in four consecutive finals with the Cleveland Cavaliers and claimed one title, but was rumored to be interested in the Lakers.
Now one NBA player gave the real motivation behind LeBron’s decision to move to the Lakers.
LeBron James has been a hotly discussed basketball player since he was a high school phenom in Akron, Ohio.
LeBron made good on his potential and became one of the greatest basketball players ever. However, his legacy was forever tarnished when he abandoned the hometown Cleveland Cavaliers to form a superteam on the Miami Heat.
The self-aggrandizing television moment known as “The Decision” was a move that damaged LeBron’s image. Superstars of the past didn’t jump ship to chase rings in their prime.
LeBron won two rings, then decided to go back to Cleveland to rehabilitate his legacy.
But after four years in Cleveland, LeBron was ready to move on. Lakers fans chalked up their acquisition of LeBron to their winning formula as a franchise; the Lakers trail only the Boston Celtics in number of championships.
However, one anonymous Western Conference player revealed LeBron’s true intentions.
The player told ESPN:
“He wanted to come to L.A…They just had to not f*ck it up. Jerry West just said it, and I was like, ‘Finally.’ He’s not coming to the Lakers. He came to L.A.“
The player was referencing a statement made by Laker legend and current L.A. Clippers executive Jerry West, who won championships as a player and general manager. West was the architect behind wooing Shaquille O’Neal to Los Angeles and moving up to acquire Kobe Bryant in the 1996 draft.
West said to Sports Illustrated:
“All due respect to the Lakers, who handled everything well, but, as these things go, LeBron was not a tough free-agent signing. LeBron wanted to come to L.A. and he wanted to come to the Lakers. Period. He has a family he’s thinking about. He has a home here. He has a son whom he wants to keep in one school in Los Angeles. He will be a celebrity out here…“
As the player and West both stated, LeBron’s true goal is to be a “global icon,” which he stated years ago in an interview.
LeBron can’t be the true global icon he wants to be in Cleveland. With the entertainment industry looming, Los Angeles was the only destination that made any sense.
LeBron has already acted in movies, and he’s currently producing several film and television projects.
And beyond Hollywood, LeBron wants to be beloved as an activist hero.
He dipped his toe in the political water when he shared a stage with Hillary Clinton in Ohio during the 2016 election.
LeBron’s endorsement turned out to be a giant fail, as support for Clinton dwindled in the state, even with LeBron’s support.
Since then, LeBron has shifted toward attacking Donald Trump nonstop and positioning himself as a thought leader on the political left.
LeBron hasn’t exhibited any specific knowledge on any issues, but that hasn’t stopped him from speaking out and ripping Trump.
His rhetoric will only increase now that he’s in the entertainment nexus.
LeBron James didn’t go to the Lakers to win championships. He seems satisfied with three rings.
The Lakers aren’t close to serious contention, and LeBron turns 34 during the upcoming season. The list of perimeter players who were still elite beyond 34-years-old is short, and LeBron has a ton of mileage on his proverbial tires.
He doesn’t have a lot of time to waste building the Lakers, which is what they require.
LeBron isn’t chasing rings. He’s chasing status.