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Los Angeles Lakers Pursuing 5x NBA All-Star?

Dec 18, 2023; Los Angeles, California, USA; The Los Angeles Lakers logo outside of Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Earlier in the season, reports suggested the Los Angeles Lakers were seeking a third star to pair with Anthony Davis and LeBron James, provided he stays with the team this summer. Initially, Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young appeared to be the most likely candidate for the Lakers’ next star. While this could still be true, new reports are linking the Lakers to Cleveland Cavaliers guard Donovan Mitchell. And according to The Athletic’s Jason Lloyd, the Lakers are expected to be “at the front of the line” in the Mitchell sweepstakes.

“If Mitchell doesn’t sign an extension with Cleveland this summer, the Cavs will have to explore trade options — and one of the teams standing at the front of the line will be the Lakers. It’s possible, given Mitchell’s current condition with his calf, that he has already played his final game in a Cavs jersey.”

After spending the last two seasons in Cleveland, Mitchell has one guaranteed year remaining on his contract. Currently, Mitchell’s Cavaliers are down 3-1 to the Boston Celtics in the second round of the 2024 NBA Playoffs. However, due to a calf injury, Mitchell missed Game 4 and could miss Game 5 as well.

Los Angeles Lakers Pursuing 5x NBA All-Star?

Cavs Owner Dan Gilbert Believes Donovan Mitchell Will Re-Sign

Despite the uncertainty of Mitchell’s contract status, Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert thinks the 27-year-old will remain in Cleveland. In March, Gilbert said Mitchell “loves the city” and playing with the team.

“We’ve been talking to him, sure, for the last couple of years about extending this contract,” Gilbert said Thursday in an interview with The Associated Press. “We think he will extend. I think if you listen to him talk, he loves the city.

“He loves the situation in Cleveland because our players are very young and we’re just kind of putting the core together that he’s clearly the biggest part of.”

However, Mitchell responded to Gilbert’s comments in a less optimistic fashion for Cavaliers fans.

“We all have things to focus on outside of that,” Mitchell said.

“I’ll handle that when it comes to. I understand you’ve got to answer that question, and I’ll give you the same answer — my teammates know me, at the end of the day we’re going out there trying to find ways to win a championship.”

What Donovan Mitchell Would Bring to the Lakers

If the Lakers can add Mitchell to the team, he will immediately boost their offensive game. Since entering the league in 2017, Mitchell has averaged at least 20 points per game each season. Furthermore, he has arguably played the best basketball of his career in his two seasons with the Cavaliers. Throughout his stint in Cleveland so far, Mitchell is averaging 27.5 points, 4.6 rebounds, and 5.2 assists per game. Additionally, Mitchell is also shooting 47.5% from the field and 37.8% from beyond the arc in that time.

Assuming the Lakers retain James this offseason, it is clear they will need another star to boost their title chances. Mitchell provides excellent scoring and would help lessen the load on Davis and James.


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