After the NBA trade deadline on March 15, the Los Angeles Lakers had made some controversial moves to improve the roster and save money in the process. The goal for the Lakers’ front office was to bring in an upgrade at the point guard position and they were able to do just that by trading Luke Walton and Jason Kapono to the Cleveland Cavaliers in order to acquire Ramon Sessions and Christian Eyenga.
With Sessions spinning his wheels in Cleveland behind Rookie of the Year Kyrie Irving, the Cavs didn’t hesitate to trade their backup point guard to Los Angeles. Sessions heading to the City of Angels was a forgone conclusion and an absolute steal of a trade that gave the Lakers the speed and youth in the backcourt that had been sorely lacking with veteran Derek Fisher as the starter.
During the regular season, Sessions played well after the trade to Los Angeles and had Lakers fans excited that the team may have found the missing piece to the puzzle. Unfortunately, the success of the regular season for Sessions didn’t continue over to the playoffs.
In the second-round series with the Oklahoma City Thunder, Sessions may have shown that he isn’t the right man for the job in Los Angeles. In five games, Sessions shot 35.3 percent from the field while averaging 6.8 points per game. Along with the poor shooting, the 26-year-old point guard committed 11 turnovers and failed to make an impact defensively against Russell Westbrook.
As a result of Sessions struggling in the second round, the Lakers had no answer for Westbrook as he clearly dominated the series and was the difference of the Thunder.
In the first round against the Denver Nuggets, Ty Lawson was also the difference maker against the Lakers with Sessions having little impact in that series as well.
With Sessions failing to live up to expectations in the playoffs, the Lakers’ front office might have a tough decision to make in the off-season. Sessions has made it known that he intends to opt-out of his current contract in order to ink a long-term deal with the Lakers or another team.
As of July 1, there may be some intriguing free agents available on the open market. Veterans Steve Nash and Deron Williams (player option) will become available, but the Lakers might not be able to afford to acquire either superstar.
Other point guard options via free agency:
- Aaron Brooks, Phoenix Suns (restricted)
- Raymond Felton, Portland Trail Blazers
- Kirk Hinrich, Atlanta Hawks
- Chauncey Billups, Los Angeles Clippers
- Jameer Nelson, Orlando Magic (player option)
- D.J. Augustin, Charlotte Bobcats
- Jordan Farmar, New Jersey Nets
- Goran Dragic, Houston Rockets
- Derek Fisher, Oklahoma City Thunder
- Mo Williams, Los Angeles Clippers (player option)
- Jonny Flynn, Portland Trail Blazers
- Jeremy Lin, New York Knicks
Even though Sessions would like to sign with the Lakers, the team might explore other options like the names mentioned above. The big fish like Nash, Williams and Lin may be out of the question with all of their current teams looking to re-sign them, but the draw of playing in Los Angeles alongside Kobe Bryant might be enough to lure them in.