After failed negotiations at the deadline during the 2018-19 season, the Los Angeles Lakers swung a trade for Anthony Davis in July 2019, parting with Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Josh Hart and future draft picks.
The New Orleans Pelicans, under vice president of basketball operations David Griffin, were lauded as having fared well in the trade. Some believed the Lakers to have taken on a certain measure of risk considering Davis was entering what could be the final year of his contract.
Although he seemingly forced a trade to L.A., Davis was said to have interest in the Chicago Bulls and New York Knicks as well. Suffice to say, Davis’ first season with the Lakers was a rousing success.
He immediately bonded with LeBron James and the two led the franchise to its 17th title, tying with the Boston Celtics for most in NBA history.
As Davis’ faces a free agency decision, he is expected to decline a player option for next season and re-sign with the Lakers, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic:
Davis plans to opt out of his $28.7 million player option and re-sign with the Lakers, sources tell The Athletic. Davis and his agent, Rich Paul, will hold meetings in the coming weeks to discuss the situation and the contract term that is most sensible for Davis.
In January of this year, Davis predictably declined a four-year contract extension offer from the Lakers. It left him on track to potentially opt out this offseason and then sign a new deal.
There are multiple avenues Davis could head down, with perhaps the most likely being signing a three-year contract with an opt out after two. Such a deal would afford him the opportunity to become a free agent with 10 years of service and thus qualify for a more lucrative max contract.
Lakers as ‘envisioned’ for Davis
When asked about his pending free agency decision in the bliss of the Lakers celebrating their title, Davis said he was not yet sure of a decision and would take time to evaluate options.
That wasn’t reason for much concern, however, as he’d recently raved about the organization. “I just feel like everything has fallen into place,” Davis said. “When I got here, obviously the goal is to win a championship. …
“It’s been a great process for me, it’s been great being around the guys that we have, obviously been great being around ‘Bron. He’s just helping me through it all. … It’s everything that I’ve envisioned.”
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