Lebron James, 27-year-old Miami Heat forward, is responding to rumors that he is considering a future with the Los Angeles Lakers in a few years.
While ESPN reports noted that the Los Angeles Lakers were already looking into acquiring James when he has the opportunity to opt out of his contract after two seasons, the NBA champion is not ready to entertain such reports.
"I'm here, and this is what it's all about," James said after the Heat's 105-78 preseason win over the Detroit Pistons on Thursday. "I'm preparing for this season, preparing to defend our title and that's it. This is where ... I'm here now."
James and teammates Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh all signed on as free agents with the Heat in 2010 with contracts that will allow them to opt out of their deals in the 2013-2014 season if they do not choose to remain with the team for two more seasons. However, when the Heat's shooting guard Wade caught wind of reports positioning James with the Lakers in a few seasons, he did not seem too thrilled.
"They (media) can leave my teammate alone, man," Wade said after his recent preseason game. "Get on with that. He's going to be here. We're straight. So they can go and mess with somebody else."
Bosh, Heat forward turned center, decided to take the NBA rumors about his teammate with a grain of salt.
"It's old news," Bosh said. "We've been there before. All of us experienced that with 2010. That's pretty much it. We can't really worry about all that stuff."
For James, media reports of him playing with the Lakers was something that comes with the territory.
"It's not frustrating. Guys are making stories every day. It doesn't matter to me," James said. "I'm true to my teammates. I'm here and this is what it's all about -- us building and trying to get better as a team. Anyone can write a story. If you have ESPN, then it becomes credible. So do what you've got to do."