NBA

NBA: Lakers’ Anthony Davis Addresses His Pending Free Agency

Lakers forward Anthony Davis

The Los Angeles Lakers made the big splash move over the offseason with the addition of star big man Anthony Davis. However, the conversation continues to hover around his long-term future with the franchise as he enters the fourth year of his five-year, $145 million deal that has a player option for the final season. With all that in mind, Davis has decided to get in front of all the chatter.

Lakers bring in Anthony Davis

Throughout the last several months, there had been the bumbling talk of Davis’ interest in making the move to Los Angeles to join LeBron James with the Lakers. The situation lingered throughout the first half of last season with things falling apart at the trade deadline.

The Lakers were able to resurrect trade talks over this past summer that led to them eventually hammering out a deal that sent Davis to the Lakers in exchange for three first-round picks along with guards Lonzo Ball and Josh Hart and forward Brandon Ingram. This has put the 26-year-old in place to be a key piece of the puzzle alongside James, who could become the best duo in the league.

It has also brought to the forefront discussions about his long-term future with the Lakers given that he has the opportunity to head into the free-agent market for the first time in his career next summer.

Anthony Davis shuts down chatter concerning his contract situation

Since arriving to the Lakers, Davis has remained mum on the subject of his contract while avoiding discussing anything that extends beyond the 2019-20 campaign.

He once again stayed the course during Lakers Media Day last Friday by stating that he is only focused on doing what he can to help guide the team to an NBA title next season, according to Kurt Helin of Pro Basketball Talk.

“I just want to focus on this year,” Davis said. “Coming here, the Lakers definitely welcomed me with open arms and made me feel like this was home. But at the same time, it’s about what we can do this year. We have a special team, special unit, special coaching staff and we’re going to do whatever we can to focus on this year and try to come out victorious…

Davis is certainly well aware of the parameters of the entire situation as leaving the discussion open until next offseason allows him to sign a more lucrative deal in free agency instead of inking an extension now. It is a logical plan of action for him to only turn attention to that situation when the time calls for it.

Lakers’ expectations for the 2019-20 season

Lakers LeBron James, Kyle Kuzma, Anthony Davis, and Rajon Rondo along with head coach Frank Vogel
With Anthony Davis in the mix, the Lakers have a chance to put together a special 2019-20 season. | Scott Varley/MediaNews Group/Torrance Daily Breeze via Getty Images

There is a renewed sense of optimism around the Lakers about what lies ahead of the team now that they have two bonafide elite players heading the charge. Davis is widely regarded as the top big man in the league, which some may suggest he’s even the best overall player.

He has a chance to make a significant impact as one of the Lakers’ driving forces that could put him in the conversation to earn both an MVP and Defensive Player of the Year award next season. This alone could raise the bar even higher for his next deal in the summer of 2020 that will more than likely far surpass his current contact.

That said, there will be an adjustment period for Davis to play alongside James and an almost entirely new cast of teammates, as well as working in another offensive scheme under head coach Frank Vogel. Nonetheless, there is plenty of excitement around the Lakers about the potential to not only compete in the playoffs but via for an NBA title.