NBA Rumors: Lakers & Clippers To ‘Sniff Around’ On Thunder’s Kemba Walker This Summer
Dennis Schroder, Lakers, Kemba Walker
Brian Babineau-NBAE

The Los Angeles Lakers are expected to make some moves this offseason after a disappointing first-round exit and one of the biggest questions is what will happen with the team’s point guard situation. Last year’s starter Dennis Schroder is a free agent and is reportedly asking for a massive contract, which the Lakers may or may not give him.

If the Lakers do want to go another direction the only way to do so would be via trade, and possibly even a sign-and-trade involving Schroder as they won’t have salary cap space even if Schroder walks in free agency. And one apparent target for the Lakers could be a player who has already been moved once this summer in Kemba Walker.

On The Lowe Post Podcast, ESPN’s Zach Lowe said that he believes both the Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers will explore the possibility of dealing with the Oklahoma City Thunder for Walker:

“I think both the L.A. teams are going to be sniffing around Kemba Walker,” Lowe said. “I think that’s the market. Now, I don’t know if you can get up to the money, I don’t know if they have whatever Oklahoma City wants, but that’s the level that I think they can target.”

Walker still has two years remaining on his contract worth $73 million with that second year being a player option so for the Lakers, involving Schroder in such a deal would be a necessity as they don’t have many other contracts to work with. Additionally, the earliest first-round pick the Lakers can include in a trade, which is certainly what the Thunder are looking for, is in 2026 and there is no guarantee that Schroder would agree to return to the franchise that dealt him away last offseason.

There are also questions about whether Walker is someone worth acquiring. Injuries, particularly knee issues, have slowed Walker recently and he played in just 43 games last season, posting his lowest scoring and field goal percentage since 2015. Walker, however, is a much more reliable shooter than Schroder having knocked down at least 36% from 3-point range in five of the last six seasons.

Rumors are always going to surround the Lakers, especially after a disappointing playoff exit and this will almost definitely be one of many in the coming weeks.

Schroder seeking at least $100 million contract in free agency

Schroder’s contract this offseason has been the source of discussion for much of the regular season and now the picture is getting clearer as to exactly what it will take to keep him in Los Angeles. Schroder has reportedly made it very clear that he is expecting a deal in the $100-120 million range.

Rob Pelinka has spoken about the desire to bring Schroder back this summer, but as an unrestricted free agent, that choice is ultimately not theirs to make. Of all the potential free agents this offseason, the situation of Schroder will be the one most closely watched.

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