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Lebron James Future in Basketball and Potential Contracts

Lebron James at Lakers (Via NBA/Twitter)

On Friday, James’ son Bronny James declared for the NBA draft. LeBron James has previously expressed interest in playing with his son in the NBA.

As far as basketball settings go, it was hard to top the buzz Saturday night inside Crypto.com Arena.

LeBron James, on the brink of becoming the first player in NBA history to reach the 40,000-point plateau, arrived hours before his Los Angeles Lakers tipped off at home against the Denver Nuggets.

Entertainment industry impresarios such as Jeffrey Katzenberg, Peter Berg, Byron Allen, and Lemuel Plummer filed in through the VIP entrance. Stars from film and sports — Kate Hudson and Dyan Cannon, Novak Djokovic, and Magic Johnson — dotted the stands.

Lebron James at Lakers (Via NBA/Twitter)

Even James himself was flanked by a documentary crew capturing footage for his upcoming Netflix series.

During a break in the action midway through the second quarter — LeBron had scored the ninth point he needed to make history a few minutes earlier — James winked in the direction of Lakers governor Jeanie Buss, located in her second-row seat across from the home bench.

It was a custom the two shared during his first couple of seasons in L.A. that James dusted off for the historic night.

After the game, the Lakers commemorated the moment on their theater-style marquee in the player tunnel: 1st NBA Player Ever. Congrats LeBron James. 40,000 Points Scored.

James, who has privately questioned whether Laker Nation would ever fully embrace him after seeing him battle their beloved Kobe Bryant for so long, acknowledged the way the fans and the franchise showed up for him.

“Much respect and much loyalty to the Laker fan base for showing me that love,” James said. “Being the first player to do something, that’s pretty cool in this league.”

Lebron James at Lakers (Via NBA/Twitter)

The Lakers and James can pair on another first this offseason. Should he agree to a new, multiyear contract, L.A. will be guaranteed to be the first and only team that James will have played eight consecutive seasons with, eclipsing the seven-year start to his career with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

As rocky as James’ relationship with the Lakers has appeared at times, it’s hard to imagine any other franchise providing the elements that aligned Saturday night in L.A.

But James, nearing 40 years old and in his 21st season, has options as he approaches free agency for the fifth — and perhaps final — time in his career.

James has made more than $482 million in salary in his career and will become the first player in NBA history to pass the $500 million mark next season, by either opting into his $51.4 million salary, signing a new contract with the Lakers, or, in a less likely scenario, signing with another team.

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