Los Angeles Lakers Superstar LeBron James Adds Fuel to Retirement Rumors

LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers may be out of the playoffs, but they certainly aren't out of the headlines. The 19-time All-Star took to Instagram earlier today, quoting Jay-Z and pondering how fans will look back on him when he's gone.

James famously flirted with retirement following the Lakers' exit from the Western Conference Finals. The Lakers fell to the Denver Nuggets 4-0 with James averaging 27.8 points, 9.5 rebounds, and 10.0 assists per game across the four losses.

Despite potentially needing foot surgery, James is expected to come back for the 2023-24 season and even beyond. He has two years and $97 million guaranteed to him on his current contract, and his son Bronny James could enter the NBA as soon as 2024. LeBron James has regularly shared his dream of playing professional basketball with his son.

More than likely, James's post is simply a ploy to garner a little bit of attention ahead of a monumental Eastern Conference Finals Game 7 between the Boston Celtics and Miami Heat. He still has too much solid basketball in him to walk away from the game. He averaged 28.9 points, 8.3 rebounds, and 6.8 assists per game over 55 appearances this past season with a solid .583 true shooting percentage. He's still perfectly capable of picking his spots and delivering in the clutch.

It's also possible James is trying to exert pressure on the Lakers ahead of a crucial offseason. Austin Reaves and Rui Hachimura are set to hit free agency, and any stinginess by the Lakers could result in an inadequate roster heading into James's age-39 season. The four-time MVP could be reminding the Lakers to make the most of the time they have with him. 

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