Recent Lakers report should put a stop to bizarre Knicks-LeBron James trade takes

No, the Knicks shouldn't get LeBron!
New York Knicks, Los Angeles Lakers, LeBron James
New York Knicks, Los Angeles Lakers, LeBron James / Al Bello/GettyImages

The New York Knicks aren't focused on the offseason yet. Non-playoff teams finished their seasons a month ago, while New York is wrapped in a second-round battle with Indiana. The offseason rumors started a while ago, but the Knicks still need to see how the postseason shakes out.

One option that's been discussed too many times is trading for LeBron James. The 39-year-old has a $51.4 million player option for next season that he could decline to become an unrestricted free agent. Or, the Lakers could trade him, depending on what LeBron wants for his future.

Los Angeles was a first-round exit and fired Darvin Ham. The team has yet to hire a new head coach, with names like JJ Redick and Kenny Atkinson floating around. Whoever is hired has to be prepared to make a deep playoff run, or their job could be at stake.

Even though LeBron could leave the Lakers, there's not much reason to believe he'll do so. Because the Knicks finished as the No. 2 seed in the East and still have their treasure chest of draft assets, New York has been labeled by some (like Stephen A. Smith) as a team that should try to get LeBron.

The question is... will he be available?

Lakers reportedly want LeBron to return on whatever terms he wants

Los Angeles hasn't indicated that it doesn't want LeBron back. The Lakers don't have any draft capital, so their best chance to win now is with LeBron and Anthony Davis. Luckily for LA, James loves the city and so does his family.

It's not surprising that ESPN's Dave McMenamin reported, "The Lakers want LeBron James to come back on any term that he wants to." It doesn't matter if he wants to sign a one-year, two-year, or three-year deal.

With Bronny James declaring for the NBA draft (while maintaining eligibility) and entering the transfer portal, there's a chance the Lakers could take a swing on him to further convince LeBron to stay. If that's the route the Lakers want to take, the Knicks should do nothing to stop them. It's not 2010 anymore. LeBron has fought off Father Time, but soon enough, he won't be able to. He wouldn't push New York to the next level.

Until LeBron is officially retired (and maybe not even then), the Knicks talk will never end, but signing an extension in LA would help.