Joe Lacob on LeBron James joining Lakers: ‘I don’t really care’
Golden State Warriors owner Joe Lacob was brutally honest in a recent interview when asked about LeBron James’ decision to join the Los Angeles Lakers.
“I expected it, and I don’t really care,” Lacob told The Athletic’s Tim Kawakami this week on The TK Show Podcast, as transcribed by NBC Sports Bay Area. “If anything, I’m positive about it because I think it’s good for the league to have the Lakers be great again — or at least good (laughter). And I was a fan of the Lakers by the way. I lived down there my teenage years.”
James’ arrival in L.A. obviously presents a new wrinkle for Lacob’s Warriors in the loaded Western Conference. Although the notion that the Lakers — with the roster in its current incarnation — will present a challenge for the two-time defending NBA champions in the West as soon as this upcoming season is arguably unlikely. And that’s even with James, the best player on the planet, leading the way.
That said, Lacob is a savvy enough owner to recognize how the entire NBA benefits when iconic organizations like the Lakers — or those that call major markets home — are competitive, not struggling.
“I like the Lakers being good. I hope the Knicks get good some day; Chicago gets better. I like some of the bigger market teams,” Lacob said. “What’s amazing about the NBA is that it’s been so successful in the last few years without the big-market teams being successful.
“Imagine how good it’ll be if some of these teams really do perform. So it’s a good thing. LA-San Francisco is a great rivalry. LeBron against the Warriors is a great rivalry. It’s exciting. You’re asking about it because it’s gonna be fun. And I’m looking forward to it.”
The Warriors and Lakers will meet twice in the preseason in back-to-back games on Oct. 10 and Oct. 12. But fans eager to see the two squads play in the regular season will have to wait, as the first showdown does not come until a nationally televised game on Christmas Day.
As Lacob said, it’s gonna be fun.