Anthony Davis’ first year with the Los Angeles Lakers could not have gone any better as the superstar helped them to the 2020 NBA championship and cemented himself as the best big man in the league.
Davis wreaked havoc on the Miami Heat throughout the six games of the NBA Finals, dominating the defensive end while also getting his own offensively. His two-way play was everything the Lakers could have asked for and his efforts led to his first ring.
While the championship victory is sweet, the front office will have their hands full in trying to build the roster ahead of the 2020-21 season as they have several players who can opt out of their current contracts.
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Rajon Rondo are expected to test the free agency and both could conceivably leave as their playoff performances earned them considerable raises.
Davis is also expected decline his player option, but reports have indicated it would be to re-sign with the Lakers. According to Brad Turner of the L.A. Times, rival executives believe that will be in the form of a two-year contract that has a player option after the first:
Most NBA executives, who are not authorized to speak publicly on Davis’ situation, believe the seven-time All-Star forward’s best course is to opt out and sign a two-year deal with the Lakers that includes a player option for the second season.
With all signs pointing to Davis re-signing with the Lakers, the only question is what his next contract would look like. The proposed deal would allow Davis to re-enter free agency in short order and enable him to make more money if the cap bounces back after this year.
Another option for Davis would be to sign a three-year deal with the third year as a player option. This type of contract would put Davis at 10 years of service and make him eligible for up to 35% of the salary cap, amounting to a sizable payday for the star.
Regardless, Davis’ future with the purple and gold seems set and it will be exciting to watch him and LeBron James compete for more rings for the foreseeable future.
Davis reflects on past year after being dealt from New Orleans
When Davis got his wish to be traded to Los Angeles, it also meant he made an enemy out of the New Orleans Pelicans fanbase. Despite his seven years in New Orleans, Davis was vilified and booed when he made his return during the regular season.
However, Davis was able to overcome the boos and achieve his goal of winning on the biggest stage. “It was tough times, but like I said, I’m a champion,” Davis said.
“When I got traded, that’s all I wanted was to be a champion, to be able to compete, be able to win. I was able to do that my first year with the Lakers.”
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