What players could the Lakers trade before the deadline? Westbrook, Beverly...
It’s clear the Lakers need reinforcements. As the trade deadline approaches and other teams make moves, speculation about who they will move on is intense.
With Kyrie Irving’s imminent move to the Dallas Mavericks now making the rounds, it would appear that the Lakers have missed yet another opportunity to bolster their roster. Yet, LeBron James and Co. don’t just have an issue regarding who might be coming in, they’ve also got to worry about who they’ve got going out.
Los Angeles Lakers have got to make moves now
With the NBA’s trade deadline fast approaching - February 9th - it’s now clear that the Lakers have got to step up what has already been a frantic effort to improve their roster. Indeed, we can expect to hear general manager, Rob Pelinka’s name often in the coming days. Yet, exactly how the Lakers will go about this is anyone’s guess. As mentioned above, Kyrie Irving is now heading to Dallas. A former teammate of LeBron James and one that the Lakers star openly endorsed, Irving has been tied with a move to LA for quite some time. Needless to say, there will be questions asked about why the franchise failed to acquire him.
Yet, the truth is that the Lakers have continually made it clear that they won’t part with any of their coveted draft capital, which ultimately means that a move for any high-profile player is likely out of the question. On the other hand, that doesn’t mean there are no players out there who could help their cause.
What about players that the Lakers want to move on?
As mentioned before, there isn’t much time left before the trade deadline and the Lakers have more worries than simply who they can sign, which brings us to Russell Westbrook and Patrick Beverley. According to reports, the Charlotte Hornets have been in contact with the Lakers in connection with a move for the pair. “The Lakers continue to search for trades centered on guards Russell Westbrook and Patrick Beverley. They have been in contact with the Hornets lately,” read the report.
Where Westbrook is concerned, the situation is tricky. For starters Westbrook’s salary is significant. Then, there is the fact that much of his time on the coast has been dogged by criticism of his contribution. It must be said, however, that since he adapted to his role off the bench, he’s been one of the team’s better players. This is to say, that between his cap hit and the fact that the team at present is better with him in it, the scenario is not clear-cut. As for Beverley, it would be unfair not to acknowledge his defensive efforts, which have been stellar. On offense, not so much. With an average of 6.4 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game, it would be fair to say he’s not exactly Lakers material.
What then do the Lakers do?
While it’s not entirely clear how the Lakers will move before Thursday, it’s clear they intend to do something to correct the fact that they are currently 24-28 on the season. Acquisitions like the Wizard’s Rui Hachimura are a clear indication that the front office would like to address the situation, but the reality is they’re going to have to do quite a bit more in a short space of time, if they’re to have any hope of making a push for the post season. Watch this space.
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