Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James is reportedly considered the front-runner to own an NBA expansion franchise in Las Vegas. There’s been plenty of hype about Las Vegas having a Basketball team we could call our own. With The Golden Knights coming into existence as an expansion team 2017–18, The Raiders moving to Las Vegas on January 22, and the Aces finally making Las Vegas their home before the 2018 season, It’s only right to have an expansion Basketball team.
During a discussion on his On The Ball with Ric Bucher podcast insider Ric Bucher said LeBron is in the “pole position” to serve as an NBA owner in Las Vegas.
Bucher added that he has been told Las Vegas and Seattle expansion teams are in the works and could be announced as soon as the NBA’s next television deals. The NBA’s current TV contracts with ESPN and Turner Sports run through the 2024-25 season. If the NBA and James have mutual interest in him owning an expansion franchise in Vegas, the timeline of the TV deals could be a clue to when he plans to retire. LeBron is currently 37 years old, meaning he will be 40 by the end of the 2024-25 campaign. At that point, James could retire and conclude an illustrious, 22-year NBA career in which he established himself as one of the all-time greats, although that isn’t necessarily a guarantee. LeBron could both own and play for a Las Vegas franchise, but with the turnaround of at least two years between a franchise getting announced and playing for the first time, that may not be viable. However the thought of Lebron’s son Bronny playing on an NBA team that his father owns could be magic.
James has been vocal about his desire to play alongside his son, Bronny, in the NBA at some point, which is something that could compel him to extend his career. Bronny is part of the 2023 recruiting class, meaning he could conceivably play in the NBA as early as the 2024-25 season. If the Lakers manage to land him and pair him with his father, it would perhaps give LeBron even more incentive to retire after the 2024-25 season, as he would have accomplished his goal.