Stephen A. Smith has a bold suggestion for LeBron James
Stephen A. Smith, the loquacious ESPN personality and reporter, has been known for giving LeBron James plenty of credit and love on the air, but he has also taken the Los Angeles Lakers superstar to task on occasion.
On Wednesday morning’s episode of “First Take,” Smith made a bold suggestion to the Lakers’ front office that he feels will improve their situation, and it’s something that some fans won’t want to hear or consider.
Via Lakers Daily:
“Sports pundit Stephen A. Smith recently got on the air and claimed that he believes the Lakers should consider trading four-time MVP LeBron James.”
"Lakers should strongly consider trading LeBron"
— Stephen A. Smith (First Take)#NBATwitter #LakeShow pic.twitter.com/OOZ7sb4nIv
— 𝙏𝙖𝙡𝙠𝙞𝙣’ 𝙉𝘽𝘼 (@_Talkin_NBA) May 4, 2022
Lakers fans seem to be divided on whether the team should trade their main superstar.
James will be entering the final year of his contract, and he reportedly is considering playing it out rather than signing an extension later this summer once he becomes eligible to do so.
If James is steadfast in not signing an extension, it could signal that he is thinking of leaving the team next summer as a free agent.
That could be a scenario in which it would make sense for general manager Rob Pelinka to trade him in order to get some value in return.
There have been recent rumblings that Klutch Sports, James’ agency, has been unhappy with Pelinka, and if that rift isn’t resolved, it could possibly lead to James leaving L.A. as soon as possible.
More specific suggestions from Smith
Smith didn’t hold back when he elaborated on his suggestion that the Lakers should deal James.
He said that, in his opinion, their roster is lacking and that the team is not going anywhere, and he even claimed that trading the four-time champ would help restore the Lakers’ credibility around the league.
Smith went on to recommend some teams that L.A. should partner with in a potential trade.
Via Cavaliers Nation:
“I’m calling Cleveland with some of their young talent,” Smith said.
“… I’m calling Cleveland. I’m calling Miami because they’ve got some – you talk about Bam Adebayo, Tyler Herro, they’ve got some young talent. I’m calling them.
“I’m calling Utah. Donovan Mitchell, you want out? D-Wade (Dwyane Wade) little minority owner up in there. I’m calling Utah.”
At least for now, it seems extremely unlikely that the Lakers would even consider trading James.