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Report: LeBron agrees to 1+1 max extension to remain with Lakers

New Orleans Pelicans v Los Angeles Lakers

LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 1: LeBron James #6 and Anthony Davis #3 of the Los Angeles Lakers look on before the game against the New Orleans Pelicans on April 1, 2022 at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2022 NBAE (Photo by Jim Poorten/NBAE via Getty Images)

NBAE via Getty Images

LeBron James is not leaving the Lakers. At least not for a couple more years.

As expected, LeBron agreed to a 1+1 extension with the Lakers, worth $97.1 million if he plays both seasons, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

This deal locks LeBron in with the Lakers for the next two seasons, then he will have a player option. The Lakers could not extend LeBron for longer due to the over-38 rule that limits contract lengths for older players (LeBron is 36).

LeBron had established himself and his family in Los Angeles — his children are comfortable in school here, the production company that will be a focus of his post-basketball life is here — and his social media throughout much of the summer highlighted how much family means to LeBron.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CgxYnHyPIcZ/

While some in the media searched for potential drama, LeBron re-signing in L.A. was always the most likely outcome.

The 1+1 deal means he will be a Laker this coming season and the next one but could opt out and be a free agent the year his son Bronny could enter the NBA. LeBron has been clear he wants to play his final season with his son.

LeBron met with Lakers GM Rob Pelinka and new coach Darvin Ham to talk contract, but mostly strategy on the court and with the roster to turn these Lakers into contenders. They are not as currently constructed. Part of that is the Russell Westbrook trade situation, and after that meeting word leaked out the Lakers would be willing to give up both first-round picks it can trade — 2027 and 2029 — in a deal for Kyrie Irving. However, the Nets have their own issues, and nothing has materialized.

LeBron isn’t leaving the Lakers. Now the question becomes can the rest of this Lakers’ team and organization raise itself up to LeBron’s level?