The Lakers have finally secured their big NBA free agency fish, signing LeBron James to a four-year max contract on Sunday night. James might end up being the only top free agent to sign in Los Angeles this summer (no offense, Lance Stephenson and JaVale McGee) but next summer should be a big one for Magic Johnson and Co., too.
There are several star NBA players set to hit free agency in 2019. Several of them make sense for the Lakers and LeBron James.
Klay Thompson, Jimmy Butler and Kawhi Leonard (assuming he's not traded to the Lakers) will all be free agency targets for Los Angeles next summer.
All three players are ideal fits next to LeBron. The Lakers should have the cap space to sign at least one of them to a max contract, too.
ESPN outlined how much cap space Los Angeles should be able to create in 2019:
The scenario I've outlined where the Lakers sign nothing but one-year deals this summer would leave L.A. with something like $25 million in cap space in 2019 with Deng on the books.
Waiving and stretching Deng then would get the Lakers to about $37 million in projected space, more than enough to make a max offer to players with seven to nine years of experience.
It might be tough to imagine Klay Thompson leaving the Warriors, but his father did play for the Lakers. Perhaps he'll be interested in something new if Golden State wins another championship.
Butler, meanwhile, is reportedly a little frustrated with the situation in Minnesota. He can opt out next summer and will surely be a Lakers target if he does.
And Leonard, of course, is reportedly intent on coming to the Lakers at some point if he's not traded there this summer.
So, LeBron is currently the only big-time player on the Lakers roster, but you can expect that to probably change within the next 12 months or so.