James, a four-time league MVP and three-time finals MVP, will join a young cast in Los Angeles. After bolting from Cleveland in 2010, he returned in an emotional homecoming four years later, determined to make the Cavs champions.
The three-time National Basketball Association champion was selected by the Cavaliers in 2003 as the first pick in the National Basketball Association draft and established himself as one of the league's best players.
"In his Instagram story, LeBron said", Thank you Northeast Ohio for an incredible 4 seasons. "This will always be home", he wrote. James could be sold on the idea of a trial with Cousins, with the possibility of filling the second star seat with a better option in the future. ESPN reported shortly after the James news that Leonard wants to be a Laker, though those trade talks have not progressed, according to multiple outlets.
But money and years of security were less a concern than being able to play for a title contender.
On Sunday, reports indicated that LeBron would be taking his talents to Hollywood on what Adrian Wojnarowski reported via Twitter would be a four-year, $154 million deal.
The Lakers have reportedly been pursuing Kawhi Leonard in trades, believing that landing the San Antonio Spurs star forward could help attract James in free agency.
James' move to the Western Conference will end his dominance of the Eastern Conference: Whether Miami or Cleveland, James' teams have represented the East in the NBA Finals for eight consecutive seasons. Stephenson and James have plenty of history, dating back to Stephenson taunting James from the bench in the 2012 playoffs and reaching a high point when Stephenson blew in James' ear on the court in the 2014 playoffs.