LeBron James to take pay cut helps Los Angeles Lakers to maintain wages: Reports

Basketball: LeBron James is officially back with the Los Angeles Lakers. The seasoned megastar inked a new two-year deal on Saturday, but as per reports, there was one surprise: a wage decrease. 

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Varun Sarwate
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LeBron James is officially back with the Los Angeles Lakers. The seasoned megastar inked a new two-year deal on Saturday, but as per reports, there was one surprise: a wage decrease. 

The operative term here is "little". He was initially believed to be paid a maximum of $104 million for this arrangement, but the final figure is allegedly $101.35. This is a $2.65 million wage decrease. Now, there is no doubt that $101 million is less than $104 million. A wage reduction occurs when you are paid less than you were previously, and LeBron James circumstance matches the dictionary description well. 

However, in the history of sports pay cuts, this one falls into the "only technically a pay cut" category. This is not Aaron Judge or Shohei Ohtani passing up tens of millions of dollars to sign with their first choice. LeBron James is the first active NBA player to become a billionaire. If his money was distributed in specially made $1 million coins, two or three may go missing (as is common with a mound of loose change) and he'd never discover.

LeBron James contract has player option

This is the affluent person's equivalent of a little favor. If LeBron had signed for the maximum, Los Angeles Lakers would have moved to the second tier, which has a new set of sanctions for teams that spend more than a specific amount. Not only would the Lakers be required to match every dollar above the limit ($190 million) and pay it to the league, but they would also be unable to sign players at the mid-level exceptions. 

However, reports claims that LeBron "giving back" around $3 million to the Lakers will save them about $45,000 in second-apron fines. James's next contract was initially eligible for three years and 62 million dollars. With a player option for 2025–2026 on his two-year deal, as per reports he will be able to decide on his NBA future on an annual basis.

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