The 2015 NBA Draft will be a very important night for many teams, including the Los Angeles Lakers. If they are able to keep their top-5 protected pick, the team will be looking to add another cornerstone to the team as they continue this re-building project.
One of the top prospects this year is Ohio State guard D’Angelo Russell. While he could be perfect for the Lakers, Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer reports that the 76ers have their sights set on the freshman:
The thought around the NBA is that the 76ers hope to select D’Angelo Russell in the NBA draft, according to a league executive.
“He’s the guy they want,” the executive, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said Saturday. “That’s the word around the league. You know the Sixers. They won’t come out and say it, but he’s the guy they want.”
This idea makes sense for the Sixers as they have spent recent draft picks on Nerlens Noel and Joel Embiid. Improving their backcourt is a necessity especially after trading away Michael Carter-Williams. This, however, could make things interesting for the Lakers.
If the Sixers wind up in front of the Lakers on draft night, and the Lakers feel that Russell is their guy, they may have to make a deal with the Sixers to move up and grab him. That move would likely involve sacrificing either their other first-round pick at 27, or their second round pick at 34. Of course if Jahlil Okafor or Karl-Anthony Towns drops the Lakers could just as easily stay put.
Nothing will be for certain until May 19 when the NBA Draft Lottery takes place. The Lakers have an 82.8 percent chance of keeping their pick and a 37.8 percent chance of moving into the top-3. Lakers fans everywhere are hoping the ping-pong balls bounce in their favor that night.[divide]
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