Even though he just signed an extension to stay with the Los Angeles Lakers until the 2024-25 season, that doesn’t mean all-star guard Lebron James can’t look forward to what’s next. While the NBA has been hinting at possible expansion of teams in the near future, James has a specific request to commissioner Adam Silver. During the post-game press conference after the Los Angeles Lakers 119-115 preseason loss to the Phoenix Suns, James made a play directly to Silver to bring a team to Las Vegas, according to ESPN.
“I would love to bring a team here at some point. That would be amazing. I know Adam is in Abu Dhabi right now, I believe,” James said, alluding to the Milwaukee Bucks and Atlanta Hawks’ preseason trip to the United Arab Emirates that Silver is attending. “But he probably sees every single interview and transcript that comes through from NBA players.
“So, I want the team here, Adam. Thank you.”
A basketball team in Las Vegas would be a no-brainer. The NBA already holds the Summer League there yearly. The state already has the Las Vegas Raiders in the NFL and Vegas Golden Knights in the NHL. It seems to me Vegas and Seattle would be prime places for two more teams.
James could possibly be looking at an ownership stake in a new team. He is part owner of Liverpool FC, AC Milan, and the Boston Red Sox. Given what just happened with the controversy surrounding Suns owner Robert Sarver, it would be great for James to join Michael Jordan as two of the greatest players in the league turned owners. Of course, Lebron would have to stop playing before this could be a reality.
Silver was asked about moving the NBA beyond its 30-team threshold during the finals press conference and said nothing is imminent. However, he did mention Vegas is a great sports market.
“We are not discussing that at this time,” Silver said. “As I said before, at some point, this league invariably will expand, but it’s not at this moment that we are discussing it.”
“Those are wonderful markets,” Silver said. “We were in Seattle. I’m sorry we are no longer there. We have a WNBA team in Seattle in an almost brand-new building that’s doing spectacular. And Las Vegas, where we will be at our summer league in July, has shown itself to be a great sports market as well.”