The Los Angeles Lakers have agreed to a three-year, $186 million extension with Anthony Davis, according to Adrian Wojnarowski. Davis and the Lakers were allowed to officially begin speaking about such a deal as of Friday and the agreement came together quickly. Davis has two years left on his current contract, and the three-year extension will keep him locked in with the Lakers through 2028.
The 30-year-old Davis is one of the best players in the league when healthy, but he hasn’t been able to stay on the court since arriving in L.A. in 2019. In his four seasons with the Lakers, he’s dealt with so many injuries that it’s hard to even keep track of them all, and played 194 of a possible 307 games. With Davis (and LeBron James) in and out of the lineup, the results have been mixed for the Lakers. They won the title in 2020, got bounced in the first round in 2021, missed the playoffs in 2022 and went to the Western Conference finals in 2023.
Davis’ unreliability certainly makes giving him an extension of this magnitude a risk, but it would be much worse for the Lakers’ present and future to trade him for fifty cents on the dollar or let him walk for nothing in free agency — especially after their playoff run last season. As last season showed, if they can just get to the postseason with Davis and James healthy, that duo is enough to make some noise in a Western Conference with such parity.
Furthermore, inking Davis to an extension gives the Lakers a bridge to their post-James era. The NBA’s all-time leading scorer will turn 39 years old in December and his contract runs through 2025. Even someone of his ability cannot play forever, and the Lakers will need to plan for his eventual departure. With Davis on board, it will make it far easier for them to eventually attract another star.
After making a number of trades at the deadline last season, the Lakers further bolstered their depth in free agency by adding Gabe Vincent and Taurean Prince. They are currently have the sixth-best championship odds at 13-1, and are behind only the Denver Nuggets and Phoenix Suns in the Western Conference.