LeBron James has made watching his son play basketball a priority. With his son leaving USC, could King James leave Los Angeles? 

Bronny James both declared for the NBA Draft and entered the transfer portal for NCAA basketball. This allows him to work out for NBA teams and get a sense of where he might get drafted while maintaining the option of returning to college.

Coincidentally, his father is also a free agent this summer. In 2022, LeBron told The Athletic that he wanted to play alongside his son for the final year of his career. Could James make a move this summer depending on where his son ends up?

That would likely mean leaving the Lakers if it’s an NBA team. Los Angeles still owes the New Orleans Pelicans a first-round pick from the Anthony Davis trade, which the Pelicans can take this year or defer to 2025. If New Orleans decides they want it in 2024, then the Lakers don’t have a pick until No. 57, almost certainly too late to get Bronny.

However, he maintains leverage for his destination. Bronny likely wouldn’t stay in the draft without a promise from some team to select him. Considering that he already has endorsement deals with Nike, Beats By Dre and PSD Underwear, he can certainly afford to delay his NBA career for a year, not to mention his father’s earnings.

The father-son duo could be a package deal. LeBron can join Bronny on an NBA team, or Bronny can enroll near LeBron’s next NBA city. Does he want to play at St. John’s while LeBron joins the Knicks? Bronny’s former coach, Andy Enfield, took the job at SMU, the same city where the Mavericks play. Cleveland State isn’t exactly a basketball powerhouse.

They have the same agent, Rich Paul, and there’s no rule against consulting a trusted family member on a free-agent decision. The elder James could opt into his $51.4 million deal for next season and engineer a trade.

Ultimately, the likeliest outcome is that LeBron uses this added pressure to get the best contract while remaining in Los Angeles. But for a player who has always maximized his leverage, his son’s wide-open future adds even more of it for LeBron James.


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