Rich Paul Says LeBron James Open to Consider Pay Cut to Help Lakers Bag ‘Impact Player’

Rich Paul recently opened up on LeBron James opting out of his Lakers contract worth $51.4 million to seek roster improvement. James is also willing to take cut for quality talent, said the agent.

Published on Jun 30, 2024  |  04:01 PM IST |  81.4K
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Worth the sacrifice?

NBA superstar LeBron James has decided to opt out of the final year of his contract with the Los Angeles Lakers, valued at an impressive $51.4 million for the upcoming season. His agent Rich Paul of Klutch Sports has revealed that James is focused on enhancing the Lakers' roster and is willing to consider taking a pay cut to facilitate the signing of an impactful player. 

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LeBron James considering pay cut to help Lakers’ roster improvement

James, 39, aims to prioritize roster improvement and is determined to exert all efforts to enhance the team's competitiveness moving forward. Paul shared that James is open to negotiating a new deal with the Lakers that is below the maximum three-year, $162 million he is eligible for, in order to free up additional salary cap space for a significant signing. 

This move could potentially bring in a veteran ‘impact playmakers’ like James Harden or Klay Thompson or an established big man partner for Anthony Davis such as Jonas Valančiūnas. However, if the Lakers are unable to secure a top-tier player with the available funds, James will pursue the maximum contract. 

The urgency to finalize this deal is underscored by Team USA's upcoming training camp for the Paris Olympics, scheduled to commence in a week in Las Vegas, prompting Paul to aim for a timely resolution with the Lakers before the camp begins.  


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What do the Lakers do for LeBron James' return?

The Los Angeles Lakers are gearing up for LeBron James' return as the 2024 offseason unfolds with promising developments. Securing a bright young coach in JJ Redick and landing top prospects like Dalton Knecht and Bronny James in the NBA Draft, the Lakers are setting the stage for a potential powerhouse roster. 

With LeBron opting out of his contract and signaling his intention to re-sign with the Lakers, the team is looking to maximize their financial flexibility by potentially offering him a contract of his preference. There is also an indication that James may be open to taking a pay cut to enable the Lakers to access the non-taxpayer mid-level exception and target impact players such as James Harden, Klay Thompson, and Jonas Valančiūnas.

With the possibility of Thompson's arrival on the horizon and discussions about potential contract structures for LeBron James, the Lakers are strategically positioning themselves to make impactful moves in a competitive Western Conference landscape. 


As the Lakers aim to address roster deficiencies, especially in areas like perimeter defense and floor spacing, the pressure is on the front office led by Rob Pelinka to orchestrate key trades and signings to bolster their championship aspirations. The upcoming days will be crucial for the Lakers as they seek to strengthen their roster and enhance their chances of contending in a highly competitive Western Conference.  

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About The Author

Nitish Singh is a Sports Content Writer at Pinkvilla and covers all things NBA. Apart from following



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