Lakers superstar LeBron James has found a silver lining in one of the most challenging years of his illustrious career.
NBA superstar LeBron James has found a silver lining in one of the most challenging years of his illustrious career. And the LA Lakers and Magic Johnson are benefiting from it.
When Bron first joined the Lakers, we predicted the all-time records he’d break during his four-year stint. It’s a win either way for Magic and Co. They pulled off the signing of the century by signing James — even if he never wins a title.
Magic Johnson’s PR machine would take full advantage of LeBron becoming the NBA’s all-time leading scorer. Especially if the championship pieces needed to make this Lakers team elite never materialize. He still needs to sell out the Staples Center. The presence of LeBron James alone will do that, but becoming the all-time leading scorer in NBA history as a Laker would immediately elevate him into the “Greatest Laker of All-Time” conversation.
Magic Johnson is the ultimate hustler.
He’s aligned the premier player in the league with its most legendary team brand. He understands that with James beginning the twilight of his incomparable NBA journey, every record-breaking moment will be highly publicized, marketed and a revenue-generating fiesta for the Lakers franchise at the very least.
On the celebrity side, Staples Center is the place to be again.
— Missinfo (@Missinfo) February 21, 2016
On Wednesday night, Bron needed just 13 points to pass the incomparable Michael Jordan for fourth on the NBA’s all-time scoring list with 32,292 points.
Bron got the record.
Lebron James breaks MJ’s scoring record, making him the 4th highest scorer of all time. pic.twitter.com/jE8bHkvm9P
— Nate Grabow (@n_grabow) March 7, 2019
Jordan was his idol and the kid from Ohio chased No. 23 down in the books. It took Bron 100 more games to do it but took more than 1,000 fewer shots. If LeBron isn’t the greatest player of all-time, then he is certainly the most efficient.
— Omnisport (@OmnisportNews) March 7, 2019
Outside of Los Angeles, the magnitude of LeBron’s feat has softened the effects of another terrible loss. Bron’s team got thrashed by a score of 115-99, dropping the Lakers to 30-35 and into 11th place in the West. Injuries, bad chemistry, drama, and the failed attempt to trade the team for Anthony Davis, has resulted in the worst possible results for the Lakers. LeBron might miss his first postseason in 14 years while playing without any other noteworthy All-Stars for the first time in his career.
2019 free agency is the most important summer of Magic Johnson’s life as an NBA executive. Jeanie Buss already fell on the sword for him and LeBron trusted him to build a formidable team around him. Free agency will also dictate exactly what kind of tenure LeBron will have in his final three years in LA. Will he find the right pieces to make another title run or two? Or will his final three years in LA be a retirement tour where his skills diminish as he’s praised for his past accomplishments with a team that’s never really in contention?
— 1250 AM The Fan (@1250AMTheFan) March 6, 2019
It wouldn’t be the fairy tale ending anyone wants for LeBron, but he’s been very fortunate in his career to be able to basically call his own shots as a player. Some of his executive decisions have worked and some have backfired on him. The title against juggernaut Golden State after he forced out David Blatt and ushered in Tyronn Lue, is still a landmark moment in NBA history and the essence of a Jordanesque feat.
Either way, the Lakers are covered as far as being a must see team. Win or lose, James’ NBA record book takeover will be a captivating enough show to buy the Lakers some more time to figure out their roster situation.
Hornets owner Michael Jordan issues brief statement on LeBron James passing him on the NBA’s all-time scoring list: “I want to congratulate LeBron on achieving another great milestone during his amazing career.”
— Ben Golliver (@BenGolliver) March 7, 2019
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s all-time scoring record is a more elusive milestone for LeBron, but if he meets his career at his current pace of scoring (just over 27 ppg) he’d need 224 games to eclipse Kareem’s record of 38, 387 career points.
As much as Magic has been criticized for his failure to nab Davis and the construction of this current Lakers team, he did cover his ass corporately. In case everything went wrong during LeBron’s LA tenure, surpassing Jordan and Kobe on the all-time scoring list and possibly even reaching Kareem at No.1, would still shine a favorable light on the franchise and generate prime time national TV slots and dollars.
Bron let us know that he’s basically given up hope of winning another title after the failed AD trade this season.
Just a few weeks ago, he said: “There’s nothing I need to get in this league that I don’t already have. Everything else for me is just like icing on the cake. … There’s nothing I’m chasing or feel like I need to end my career on.”
The only thing Bron hasn’t done is to convince the world that he is the uncontested all-time GOAT. Kareem has more titles and MVP’s. Jordan still has three more titles. That debate will still be raging on when we are watching Bronny James cross dudes over in the NBA.
For now, all he can do to control that situation is to keep scoring and eclipsing legendary players statistically. His assault on Mount Rushmore records will have to provide all of the Showtime for the plunging Lakers.