The NBA trade deadline is on Thursday at 12 p.m. PT, and if the Los Angeles Lakers want to have any chance of getting back into championship contention, they will have to make some moves.
The Lakers suffered perhaps their worst loss of the season on Wednesday night, falling to the Portland Trail Blazers to drop to 26-30 on the season.
Given the Lakers’ lack of trade assets, it’s possible that there isn’t even a move to be had on Thursday, although there’s no doubt they are trying. Reports indicate they’d like to trade Russell Westbrook, which will be no easy task given his recent play and massive contract.
After Westbrook, perhaps the only tradeable asset they have is Talen Horton-Tucker, who has disappointed a bit this season but is still a promising young player.
According to Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report, the Lakers have engaged with the Toronto Raptors on trade talks involving Horton-Tucker:
Toronto appeared quite active in trade conversations Wednesday night. Various Goran Dragic scenarios. Bigs. Lakers and Raptors have discussed Talen Horton-Tucker, sources said, but any notion that deal is serious has been miscategorized by @TheSteinLine and my listeners.
— Jake Fischer (@JakeLFischer) February 10, 2022
The Raptors have had interest in Horton-Tucker before as he was who they wanted in talks with the Lakers for Kyle Lowry at this time last year. The Lakers ultimately decided not to include their only young asset, and as a result, they were eliminated in the first round of the postseason (for a variety of other reasons), and Lowry now plays for the Miami Heat.
It remains to be seen who the Lakers would be getting back in a potential deal, whether it’s Goran Dragic or a combination of some other players like Chris Boucher. If they can somehow pry Gary Trent Jr. away from Toronto then it would be a home run for L.A., although the odds of that happening seem low.
According to Michael Scotto of Hoops Hype, it could also be a three-team deal involving the New York Knicks:
Sources: The Lakers, Knicks and Raptors have discussed a 3-team trade.
Lakers get Cam Reddish and Alec Burks.
Knicks get Goran Dragic and draft picks.
Raptors get Talen Horton-Tucker and Nerlens Noel.
There’s also a chance Kendrick Nunn is added to the trade as talks continue
— Michael Scotto (@MikeAScotto) February 10, 2022
This isn’t the first time the Lakers have been linked to Cam Reddish, who was recently traded from the Atlanta Hawks to the Knicks but hasn’t received much playing time since.
He fits what the Lakers need as a wing who can space the floor, so there is a deal in there that may make sense for L.A.
Horton-Tucker explains mindset ahead of deadline
Horton-Tucker is used to being in trade rumors throughout his young career, and after Wednesday’s game against Portland, he explained his mindset this time of year.
“I just try to take every day and treat it the same. Never get too high, never get too low. I feel like that’s something that you got to do when you are at this level because of the fact that you never know what’s going to happen. There’s a lot of things that’s out of your control. I just try to control what I can control.”
Horton-Tucker was able to drown out the noise on Wednesday, putting together one of his better games with 14 points, three rebounds and seven assists off the bench.
Have you subscribed to our YouTube channel? It’s the best way to watch player interviews, exclusive coverage from events, participate in live shows, and more!