Bronny James, LeBron James
AP Photo/Jay LaPrete

LeBron James Not Expected To Leave Lakers To Play With Bronny, After All

It appears Bronny James will stay in the NBA Draft, and that LeBron James will stay with the Los Angeles Lakers — regardless of who selected his son.

Per Shams Charania of The Athletic, LeBron does not intend to leave LA just to play with Bronny, as had been previously reported. In fact, LeBron himself once said it was a dream of his to play with Bronny in the NBA.

Now, there are major questions about Bronny and if he's actually ready for the NBA after a subpar freshman season at USC that began with a heart scare. But ready or not, here he comes — as Bronny is more a basketball celebrity than a kid who's ready for the pros. And all of that is just fine with the NBA and its teams. Basketball sells to a limited audience; celebrity sells to everyone.

Anyway, LeBron and Bronny very well could play together still. The Lakers own the Nos. 17 and 55 picks in the 2024 draft. Taking a flyer on Bronny at No. 55 wouldn't hurt. That is, if someone else doesn't take Bronny first.

Nonetheless, sources have told FanBuzz they believe agent Rich Paul — who represents both LeBron and Bronny — could steer the younger James to the Lakers by telling other teams not to take him. Other teams would probably listen, too. Paul is a powerful agent and not listening to him could impact your roster in the long run.

There are others, however, who are convinced that Paul will simply listen to his client, and if Bronny is OK with being drafted by anybody, then that's where he will go — to whichever team takes him, as opposed to playing with his dad with the Lakers.

Granted, this is all a lot of scuttlebutt for a young man who averaged 4.8 points in college and looks destined for the G League in Year One (and perhaps beyond) of being a pro. But not everyone is LeBron James' kid and for that, Bronny James undoubtedly deserves extra special attention.