Anthony Davis signed a new 5-year, $190 million deal with the Los Angeles Lakers. Earlier this week LeBron James signed a 2-year extension that will keep him in Los Angeles through 2023. These things seemed like an eventuality when the Lakers won the 2020 NBA title, but the fact that it is now official just seems so... final. And so Finals.
Are the Lakers about to go to four consecutive NBA Finals? It would be the third time and team that LeBron has done that. It's a lot, I know. And it's a lot to expect of one team, I know.
This assumes that LeBron James can remain healthy for the better part of two full decades. And Anthony Davis has to stay healthy. And the front office will need to work around two very large salaries.
So that's the bad news. The good news is everything else. There is no drama in this part of LA. These guys joined forces and it worked immediately. It took one season to win a title. The two most important positions on the team are locked in. There is no drama. No wondering if either guy has a wandering eye. Neither of their best players are thinking about the possibility of playing with someone better.
Los Angeles is the ultimate destination for any veteran looking for a championship. The floor for the Lakers is the Western Conference Finals. And it's in Los Angeles with the Lakers. One of the most desirable places to play for one of the most prestigious franchises in American sports history. They've won titles in the 70's, 80's, 00's, '10's, '20's and Twin Cities. Some of the most iconic players ever have played basketball have done it in the purple and gold.
If LeBron James wasn't involved, typing all of this would make me sick. That might still be your case. Who can root for a team like this? They've had it all forever. Who even remembers the delight of Kobe's career twilight? I loved to root against the Lakers growing up. They were the New York Yankees of basketball. It's fun to see something so big and infuriatingly perfect fail.
The current Lakers are big and infuriatingly perfect. This one time - for three more years - I'm willing to enjoy it. You know that Andy Bernard quote about wishing someone had told you you were in the good old days before you left them? LeBron is the NBA version of the good old days. Somehow his prime stretched on for a such a ridiculously long time... well, we're still in it. It may never end. There's no proof it will. So we're here. Enjoy it. Appreciate what we're going to be dealing with for the next three years.
And then we can all laugh at the Lakers again when LeBron leaves to play with his son. The Lakers will surely struggle to find players who want to play alongside an aging, multi-time champion in Anthony Davis. AD will be... 30 years old? He's only going to be thirty? Oh, come on. That just doesn't seem fair. The Lakers are going to be good forever and it just isn't fair. I can't wait to go back to not appreciating them.