This summer will be a major one for the Los Angeles Lakers as they will be looking to make a huge splash in free agency. Kevin Durant is clearly the prize of the free agency class, but arguably the next best player is Toronto Raptors wing DeMar DeRozan.
DeRozan has obvious ties to the Los Angeles area, being a graduate of Compton High School and playing his sole year of college ball at USC.
His Los Angeles area roots are far from a guarantee that he is planning on joining the Lakers this summer, but Stephen A. Smith said on SportsCenter that Derozan is looking to come to Los Angeles in free agency:
“He’s enjoying his last days in Toronto because he’ll be leaving for Los Angeles in a few months anyways,”
This would be great for the Lakers if they do indeed land DeRozan this summer as he is a two-time All-Star, who has averaged more than 20 points per game in each of his last three seasons. Even if he isn’t the transcendent superstar to immediately change the fortunes of the franchise, DeRozan would at least be a step in the right direction.
The question now is whether DeRozan would actually leave a Raptors team that finished with the second-best record in the Eastern Conference this year, to join a Lakers team in complete disarray. If the Raptors were to fall in the first round of the playoffs for the third straight year, however, the move would seem more plausible.
Things for the Lakers will really begin to kick into gear once the NBA Draft Lottery takes place on May 17. Once the team finds out if they keep their draft pick, the off-season will truly begin.