Bryce James throws cold water on prospect of playing in the NBA with his dad LeBron James: 'He's gonna be 42'


LeBron James and his family celebrated Bronny James on Thursday as his NBA dream came true.

The Los Angeles Lakers selected the 19-year-old guard in the second round of the 2024 NBA Draft. While Bronny begins to prepare to play alongside his father, his younger brother also has NBA aspirations.

Bryce James, 16, will have to wait until 2026 before he is eligible for the NBA Draft. The younger James is skeptical his future Hall of Fame father will still be in the league two years from now.

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Bryce James smiles

Bryce James smiles after the game between the Phoenix Suns and the Los Angeles Lakers on January 2, 2023 at Crypto.Com Arena in Los Angeles, California. (Adam Pantozzi/NBAE via Getty Images)

During a recent Instagram Live session, a social media account asked Bryce whether he believed his father would stick around in the NBA until he was ready to make the leap to the professional ranks.

James proceeded to throw some cold water on the idea.

BRONNY JAMES TRIES TO HOLD BACK TEARS IN EMOTIONAL REACTION TO GETTING DRAFTED BY LAKERS

“I’m not gonna lie, that’s OD,” he said. “Nah, that’s too much. No, Good Lord. He’s going to be 42.”

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Bryce attended Sierra Canyon School in Southern California with his older brother for two years. He then transferred multiple times in the span of seven months. In April 2023, James left Sierra Canyon in favor of Campbell Hall in Studio City, California.

After playing a handful of summer league games with Campbell Hall, James decided to take his talent to Notre Dame High School in Sherman Oaks. Three months later, James decided to return to Sierra Canyon.

Bryce James shoots

Bryce James #5 of the Sierra Canyon Trailblazers shoots against the Cleveland Cavaliers at Cleveland High School on November 19, 2022 in Reseda, California. (Meg Oliphant/Getty Images)

Despite only being in high school, Bryce has already showed signs that he has the foundation to potentially grow into an NBA talent. 

The 16-year-old is already 6-foot-4 and has shined in games against other top talent in his age group. He scored 21 points in a Nike Elite Youth Basketball League game.

Bryce James

Bryce James and Bronny James look on during the game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Oklahoma City Thunder at Crypto.com Arena on February 07, 2023 in Los Angeles, California. (Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

The Los Angeles Times recently reported that LeBron would likely opt out of the last year of his current contract with the Lakers. He has until 5:00 p.m. ET on June 29 to inform the team of his decision.

An opt-out would make the Los Angeles Lakers forward an unrestricted free agent. However, the belief within most NBA circles is that James does not intend to leave the Lakers. 

In May, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst said if James decided to opt out, the move would likely center on the structure of his contract. If James wants to add a no-trade clause to his deal, that could be achieved in a new contract.

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NBA rules prevent no-trade clauses from being tacked on to existing contracts via extensions. Only 10 players in league history have been able to work a no-trade clause into their respective contracts.

James is projected to ultimately ink a three-year, $162 million deal. He would effectively give up around $2.3 million in total money if he opts out instead of extending his player option. But, he might believe the financial sacrifice is worthwhile if it gets him a no-trade clause.

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