NBA Free Agency is about to get wild. The L.A. Lakers have spent the past few years getting into position to sign as many of he biggest free agent names they can. If the Lakers can pull off one or two of the biggest signings, along with a specific trade, L.A. could again be a contender in the powerful Western Conference and even become a heavy contender in the odds to win the 2019 NBA Championship.
Who will L.A. end up with shortly after the clock strikes midnight this Sunday on July 1?
2018 NBA Free Agency Betting Predictions: Who Ends Up a Laker?
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LeBron “King” James
LeBron is the biggest fish in what’s turned out to be a giant ocean. The King most likely will opt out of his contract with the Cleveland Cavaliers. Many NBA analysts have stated that if The King leaves Cleveland, he’ll never be considered as good as Michael Jordan. I believe he’s already proven to be better than Jordan.
LeBron’s the greatest basketball player to ever live. At the age of 33, he’s got at least 4 more great seasons left. Why not spend them winning championships and playing against a dominant force in the Golden State Warriors? That’s a good way to cement his reputation as basketball’s greatest ever.
Chances of Signing with the Lakers: 70%
PG-13 just wants to keep the good times rolling. He didn’t have many good times in Oklahoma City this past season although it was obvious that he had a much better rapport with Russell Westbrook than Carmelo Anthony did. The Thunder already resigned Anthony.
What’s the message to George with that signing? They want to keep their nucleus together. They want George back. They believe they can make Melo, PG-13, and Russell work.
George probably doesn’t believe that. It’s almost a given that he signs with L.A.
Chances of Signing with the Lakers: 85%
Remember when the Lakers almost had both Dwight Howard and Chris Paul in the purple and gold? Former NBA Commissioner David Stern put the kibosh on that because he didn’t think it allowed other NBA franchises to compete. Right. What happened? The Lakers fell apart. They sort of haven’t recovered from that stinging disaster.
Paul is likely out the door in Houston. The reason is because he’ll demand a ton of cash while guaranteeing he gets hurt at some point during the season. Paul could end up a Laker. The chances aren’t as good as PG-13 ending up a Laker.
The chances are okay, though.
Chances of Signing with the Lakers: 55%
Kawhi Leonard isn’t a free agent. The rumor up until today, Friday, June 29, was that the Spurs wouldn’t trade Kawhi to any team in the Western Conference. That might still be true, but the Lakers have more pieces to deal to the Spurs than any team in the Eastern Conference.
Kawhi and PG-13 play the same position. In today’s NBA, that doesn’t matter. All your players outside of a dominant power forward and center are expected to dish the rock, shoot the J, and play excellent defense. That’s George and Kawhi to a “T”.
What’s the chances he ends up a Laker? Pretty good if the Spurs are intent on rebuilding. Brandon Ingram and Lonzo Ball are very good young players. So is Kyle Kuzma and Julius Randle. The Spurs could demand two of those players, Ball and Ingram most likely, that would jumpstart the rebuilding process.
San Antonio could trade Kawhi to get right back into the thick of it in the Western Conference. Ball and Ingram both have some developing to do. Wouldn’t Gregg Popovich be the perfect coach to aid that development?
Chances Kawhi becomes a Laker: 55%