The Los Angeles Lakers need to get creative this offseason, especially when it comes to trades. LeBron James is likely in the tail end of his career (but then again, he’s James) whereas a lot of money is also tied up into Russell Westbrook and Anthony Davis. The time to do anything possible to contend is right now, especially in a strong Western Conference while city rivals in the LA Clippers continue to improve. Here are two Lakers trade ideas.
Los Angeles Lakers: Two Trade Ideas
Getting Crazy With It
The New York Knicks receive Rudy Gobert.
Starting off with the Lakers, they get two solid guards who will complement James and Davis well. Conley is the ultimate veteran. He’s a true floor general and can initiate an offense. In addition, he can also get buckets when needed. Conley has been reliable throughout his entire career and may provide some fresh air based on how many in the Lakers’ base view Westbrook. Clarkson, a former Laker, brings his scoring prowess. He’ll shine in the second unit.
The Knicks are expected to make some noise in free agency, so they may as well go all-out here. Gobert is a defensive monster which will greatly help the team. Should the Knicks strengthen their core of guards, which is expected this summer, he can wreak havoc in the offensive interior as well.
Utah gets a completely new look, which is likely needed. They also retain star Donovan Mitchell. Maybe Westbrook’s fit is questionable, but his massive contract comes off the books next offseason. Randle can be a great offensive player, especially when he’s not the first option (which he wouldn’t be in Utah). Horton-Tucker and Quickley are two promising young guards who can contribute immediately, while the Jazz also stock up on picks.
The Salary Dump
Oklahoma City Thunder receive Russell Westbrook, Josh Green, a Lakers’ second-round pick and a Mavericks’ first-round pick.
Dallas Mavericks receive Luguentz Dort.
This is primarily a salary dump for the Lakers, a homecoming for Westbrook, and the Mavericks getting involved in case they see some losses in free agency.
The Lakers build depth here. Favors still has some left in the tank and is a solid big to have. Williams has the potential to shine as a two-way player. He can score in the double-digits while providing excellent perimeter defense and hustle play. Finally, Muscala is a decent depth piece.
Oklahoma City brings Westbrook “back home” in the midst of their youth movement. They’re clearly rebuilding, but Westbrook can offer mentorship in a team and city that loves him dearly. Green comes in as a prospect who may actually see playing time for the Thunder unlike with the Mavericks. Of course, the Thunder also get some of their beloved draft picks.
Dallas moves a young player and a future pick for help now. Dort can drain threes and brings in strong defensive play, which is always welcomed of course.