After a 44-point drubbing by the hands of the Philadelphia 76ers, it might be time for the Los Angeles Lakers to recalibrate the strength of their roster.
Multiple injuries have sapped the Lakers of talent and depth, but even so they’ve been unable to play a consistent brand of basketball. LeBron James didn’t mince words after the loss to Philadelphia as he said Los Angeles needs to change ‘a lot.’
James’ comments are interesting given that the Lakers have already been linked to several players in regards to trades. The most prominent rumors pertain to their interest in Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine, who is open to being traded with the team struggling.
However, inn an appearance on Hoops Tonight, Jovan Buha of The Athletic said that L.A. is reportedly more interested in DeMar DeRozan and Alex Caruso:
“I’ve actually heard that they’re more interested in DeMar DeRozan and Alex Caruso. A.C., he’s the one that got away. Lakers fans, it still bothers them. Inside of the organization, it’s still a very divisive topic. And then DeMar is someone the Lakers have courted for several years now.
“Both of those guys are on more manageable contracts. Alex has a partial guarantee for next season, DeMar is an expiring contract. DeMar comes in, he’s that over the top shotmaker that the team seemingly doesn’t really have outside of when LeBron’s jumper is falling. And then Alex Caruso, one of the best point of attack defenders in the league, one of the best perimeter in the league period. We’ve seen the success he’s had next to LeBron and AD in a Lakers jersey, so I think both of those guys make more sense within what the Lakers need. There’s real interest in all three guys, but from what I’ve heard DeMar and Alex are higher on their priority list.”
LaVine is under contract for three more years, so it makes sense why the Lakers would prefer to acquire DeRozan or Caruso. From a fit standpoint, each of them fills a need on the roster and any potential offers would probably cost the purple and gold less.
Should the Lakers continue look up and down, trade talks could heat up in the coming weeks.
Bulls would covet Austin Reaves in any potential trade for Zach LaVine
Despite the reported interest in DeRozan and Caruso, LaVine can also help L.A. given his outside shooting and scoring ability. However, in order to acquire him it seems that it would cost the Lakers at least Austin Reaves, which they are unwilling to do.
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