Lakers’ Anthony Davis officially retiring in final year of contract, to become free agent, report says


Los Angeles Lakers star Anthony Davis is officially stepping down from the final year of his contract and will become an unrestricted free agent, according to Chris Haynes of Yahoo. Fans of other teams shouldn’t be too excited, however, as this is just a formality and he is expected to re-sign with the Lakers for a long-term deal.

The moratorium on league transactions will be lifted on Monday and free agency will officially begin on Friday, two days after the 2020 NBA Draft. With such a short window between free agency and the start of training camp on the 1st. December, the two parties should soon agree on a new contract, especially since it has been in preparation for months.

At this point, the only real intrigue is whether Davis signs a maximum four-year contract to get as much guaranteed money as possible, or if he signs a slightly shorter deal in order to give himself more flexibility. For what it’s worth, LeBron James’ current contract will end in 2022, provided he doesn’t step down after next season. If he wanted, Davis could sign for two years in order to get on that same timeline.

Either way, the Lakers are well positioned to be title contenders for the next few seasons with Davis and LeBron in the lead. Despite some initial concerns about how the duo would perform, the superstar duo led the Lakers to the championship in their first season together, beating the Miami Heat in six games in the bubble last month.

It was Davis’ first ring, and he came in what was truly his first deep playoff series. He handled the pressure very well, racking up 27.7 points, 9.7 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.4 blocks per game in the playoffs, while battling a number of injuries. Along the way, he also delivered a distinctive playoff moment, hitting a buzzer-beating 3-pointer to beat the Denver Nuggets in Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals.

The Lakers are expected to be busy this offseason as they adjust their roster around the fringes, and they have already agreed to trade Danny Green and their first-round pick in this year’s draft at the Thunder. Oklahoma City in exchange for Dennis Schroder. But whatever other moves they make over the next few weeks, none will have as much of an impact as Davis re-signing.


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