On the same team as his dad LeBron, Bronny James eager to carve own path in the NBA with the Lakers

Published July 3, 2024, 2:00 PMPao Ambat

Amidst the outside noise, rookie Bronny James shifts his attention on helping the Lakers win and return to basketball glory–while playing alongside his dad LeBron. | Photo (c) Lakers

For over a week now, Bronny James has been among the main talking points of the basketball world ever since the Los Angeles Lakers drafted him 55th overall in the recent NBA Draft. 

But the 19-year-old son of LeBron James is ready to carve his own path in the league where his dad dominated–and still dominating at a remarkable level– for nearly two decades. 

“I’m... trying to get my name out for myself,” Bronny said after the Lakers officially introduced him and no. 17 pick Dalton Knecht in a press conference on Wednesday, July 3 (PH time).

“I just want to come in and get my work in and get better every day. I never really had a thought of me going to play with my dad. That’s always there to take part of, but it wasn’t a main focus of mine.”

[ALSO READ: Lakers select Bronny James at no. 55, joins dad LeBron in LA in historic NBA moment]

LeBron and his wife Savannah stood off to the side at the Lakers' facility as their eldest son reported to his first day on the job in the family business.

Bronny appeared in his first press conference as a Laker and admitted he is not concerned about the criticisms or the pressure that comes with playing alongside LeBron.

“It’s for sure amplified the amount of pressure,” Bronny said.

“I’ve already seen it in (social) media and on the internet and stuff talking about (how) I might not deserve an opportunity. But I’ve been dealing with stuff like this for my whole life. It’s nothing different. It’s more amplified for sure, but I can get through it.”

Bronny reiterated that he didn’t jump to the NBA just because his 39-year-old father is still an active player, acknowledging that he didn’t necessarily share his father’s oft-stated dream of playing in the league together.

“I never really had a thought of me going to play with my dad, but that’s always there to take part in, but it wasn’t the main focus of mine,” the former USC Trojan said.


Bronny added that he hasn’t even really had conversations with his dad about playing in the NBA and what comes with it.

“We haven’t gone too deep into that stuff yet, especially because we haven’t even started Summer League yet.”

"But stuff he’s been telling me my whole life. Just having that work ethic and coming in and getting your work in and listening to your coaches and being coachable. Stuff like that he’s driven into my head my whole life.”

With a chance of becoming the first father-son duo to share an NBA court together, the younger James instead shifted his focus on helping the Lakers in any capacity.

"For me, just building that foundation of playing the right way,” Bronny said.

“Like I said, just being that guy to be coachable and play my role and keep working while I’m doing it.”

As the Lakers announced earlier, Bronny will wear no. 9, honoring the late rap artist Juice WRLD, who referenced the number in his music.

"Juice has just been a big part of me keeping calm in some situations that I've been through," Bronny said.

"So just paying homage to him, especially because he passed, it's a really important thing for me."