The Los Angeles Lakers are on a new path now to turn the franchise around and return it to glory. Team president Jeanie Buss, president of basketball operations Magic Johnson, general manager Rob Pelinka, and head coach Luke Walton are all on the same page and hope to turn things around pretty quickly.
One issue with the Lakers’ roster is the lack of a star player. While guys like D’Angelo Russell and Brandon Ingram have the potential to reach that level, but have a long ways to go before getting there. The Lakers have always had a star on their roster, and Buss hopes that will change soon.
With the city of Los Angeles set to host the All-Star Game next season, Buss revealed to the Forbes Sports Money podcast with Mike Ozanian that it would be heartbreaking if the Lakers didn’t have an All-Star:
“Next season, Los Angeles is hosting the NBA All Star Game at Staples Center and I’m concerned that we won’t have an All Star on the team. And that would break my heart.”
While both Russell and Ingram (before his injury) have played well since the All-Star break this year, it would be pretty wishful thinking to believe that either would get to that level in 2018. As such, it is far more likely that a Lakers All-Star would have to be brought in through free agency or via trade.
The Lakers have been linked with a few players, most notably Paul George of the Indiana Pacers. It has been reported by a number of people that he would love to join the Lakers if the Pacers aren’t contenders. If Indiana can’t make the necessary improvements this summer, they could look to trade him and the Lakers would be crazy not to try to bring him in immediately.
As far as free agency goes, the Lakers have been mentioned with the likes of Kyle Lowry and Blake Griffin. Chris Paul will also be an unrestricted free agent as well. Acquiring any of those players would definitely give the Lakers that All-Star that Jeanie Buss really wants.