The Los Angeles Lakers are 26-31 and sit ninth in the Western Conference.
There was a lot of hope that the front office would ultimately be able to get something done ahead of last week’s NBA Trade Deadline to improve the roster, but ultimately that didn’t end up happening.
Late Thursday afternoon, Lakers president Rob Pelinka spoke to the media and explained why he opted to stay pat.
“The work was put in, we all worked hard but we ended up standing pat.” Rob Pelinka with @LakersReporter on the #Lakers deciding not to make a move before today’s trade deadline. pic.twitter.com/dtKApdGGET
— Spectrum SportsNet (@SpectrumSN) February 11, 2022
“It can’t be just a decision about what is best for today or best for what happened right after a loss,” he said.
“It has to be with the long term in mind and the short term. So we just didn’t find a deal that we felt made sense from all of those different perspectives.”
Pelinka went on to add that “there’s alignment there, and that’s all that matters” when it comes to buy-in from Lakers stars LeBron James and Anthony Davis on the decision to not make any trade deadline moves.
As it turns out – the “alignment” wasn’t actually there.
According to Dave McMenamin of ESPN, James and Davis in reality wanted Pelinka to make a move.
“Pelinka said there was alignment between him, LeBron, Anthony Davis to not make a move. I am told from a source familiar with LeBron & AD’s thinking that this is, ‘totally false.’ There was no conversation between the 3 on Thursday.”
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) February 11, 2022
“Rob said that he was trying to weigh the short term and the long term for this franchise, and that’s ultimately why when the Rockets wanted the Lakers to include a first-round pick, talks fizzled,” he said.
“When there was a three-team discussion between the Raptors and the Knicks and first-round compensation was desired, talks fizzled.
“But Rob Pelinka also said that ultimately there was alignment between him, LeBron James and Anthony Davis to not make a move. Now, things get interesting here, where I am told from a source familiar with LeBron and Anthony’s thinking, is that that is ‘totally false’.
“That there was no conversation between Rob Pelinka, LeBron, and Anthony Davis on Thursday. That there was no go-ahead of an OK to have inaction at the deadline. And so where things stand out right now, that tells me there’s not just problems with what you’re seeing on the court…but there’s problems off the court between an alignment … and his leaders on this team.”
The Lakers are down bad right now. There’s a reason why Rajon Rondo recently offered such a blunt take on the difference between them and his current squad, the Cleveland Cavaliers.
The photos speak for themselves.https://t.co/oImWPLaRvG
— Game 7 (@game7__) February 14, 2022
LA is currently one of six teams trying to land Goran Dragic. If they get him – great. But it is hard to envision the move turning their season around.
For better or worse, it feels like the Lakers aren’t going to improve from here. Their only chance was the NBA Trade Deadline – and it is gone now.
Charles Kruger has been credentialed to cover two Super Bowls, four NBA Finals, and one World Series. A 20-year veteran in the sports world, he has sources spanning the NBA, MLB, NFL, UFC and NASCAR. Currently residing in Los Angeles, Calif., he is Game 7’s go-to source for rumors surrounding the Lakers, Clippers and Dodgers.