The Los Angeles Lakers made a decision to stand pat at the 2019-20 NBA trade deadline, but that doesn’t mean they didn’t attempt to make moves.
Perhaps their most serious talks came with the New York Knicks for Marcus Morris, who ultimately ended up on the Los Angeles Clippers.
Prior to the deadline, the reports going around were the Knicks wanted Kyle Kuzma and Danny Green (salary filler) so that they could keep the former and then shop the latter to a contender for a first round pick. This would actually be a smart play by the Knicks. However, this would be an absolutely awful deal for the Lakers as they were plenty of ways to get to Morris’ required money without giving up Green.
Now, with the deadline passed, the Knicks reportedly rejected that offer, according to Broderick Turner of Los Angeles Times:
The Lakers had been willing to offer Kyle Kuzma and Danny Green, but the Knicks didn’t like that.
Already, this makes little sense. However, what makes even less sense is the reported Knicks counter offer that was declined by the Lakers:
While this isn’t meant to be a slight against the reporting being done, it is hard to imagine this being the reality of how the conversation happened between the Lakers and Knicks.
To start, the Lakers wouldn’t offer both Kuzma and Green as the latter has been an invaluable defensive piece for Los Angeles during the 2019-20 NBA season.
Then, the Knicks declining that and countering with a significantly worse offer makes little to no sense. The Knicks not wanting Green but wanting Avery Bradley and DeMarcus Cousins seems incorrect even for a front office as faulty as them.
Regardless of the details of the conversation, a deal could not be done and Morris wound up a Clipper in the final hour before the deadline.