LeBron James is one of the league's biggest superstars and he has been almost since the day he was drafted by the Cleveland Cavaliers after being dubbed 'The Chosen One'. LeBron's influence in any organization is massive and the jokes and rumors about him overruling coaches and GMs have persisted over the second of his career especially.
So it's no surprise that LBJ also currently wields massive influence with the Los Angeles Lakers. He was reportedly extremely involved in bringing Anthony Davis to Los Angeles by trading away a lot of the Lakers' young core and equally responsible for the acquisition of Russell Westbrook.
However, the amount of power he holds seems to be more than it seems from the outside, with Bill Oram of The Athletic explaining that it exceeds the influence that even the late, great Kobe Bryant had over the franchise's decisions.
“But for as important as Bryant was to the Lakers, sources inside the organization have long said that not even the legendary Black Mamba wielded as much power within the organization as James now has,” wrote Bill Oram of The Athletic.
“Bryant was never able to strong-arm the Lakers to make a move like the one James helped orchestrate for [Russell] Westbrook, which has proven to be an outright disaster.”
Kobe Bryant was famously a Laker for life, and after Shaquille O'Neal's departure following their three-peat, the biggest star on the Lakers for the rest of his career. He was instrumental in bringing the later title-winning teams of his career together, so to say that LeBron is more powerful within the organization than even the Black Mamba was is truly saying something.
Part of this is likely to be that the Lakers have traded away a lot of their assets to put win-now teams around LeBron and AD and thus are dependent upon them staying healthy and happy so they can perform and carry them to more titles. In any case, this report will be concerning to fans of the Lakers, as anyone player gaining too much power in an organization can often lead to some disappointments.