The Los Angeles Lakers started the 2023-24 NBA season off in bumpy fashion, but seem to have found their rhythm in recent days.
After their most recent victory over the Memphis Grizzlies, L.A. is now riding a three-game winning streak and seems primed to make a run over the next few weeks.
Aside from one of the team’s stars getting called out for cheating on his girl in embarrassing fashion, everything is going the Lakers’ way at the moment.
This week, Shams Charania of The Athletic reported that the Lakers were one of several teams in the running for Zach LaVine’s services.
“The Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat and Philadelphia 76ers are expected to have a level of interest,” he wrote.
L.A. is also one of two teams linked to a potentially blockbuster Alex Caruso trade. It isn’t too difficult to envision a scenario where, maybe, both LaVine and Caruso come as a package deal.
The prospect of LaVine being acquired by the Lakers has led to an interesting hypothetical question being asked: what is the team’s best possible offer for the Bulls star?
Realistically, some combination of D’Angelo Russell, Rui Hachimura, Taurean Prince, Jalen Hood-Schifino and draft capital would need to be part of any trade for LaVine.
Yes, he is a primarily offensive player with limited upside defensively. Sure, he has a history of nagging injuries. And his $178 million contract is less than ideal. But all that being said, LaVine is a multiple-time All-Star and widely regarded as a top-tier second option in the league.
If the Lakers want him – they will have to pay a hefty price for him.
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The big question is how confident L.A. brass feels when it comes to the current squad. If they believe another star is needed and are willing to sacrifice depth to get him – then obviously LaVine makes sense.
If they are concerned about making another Rusell Westbrook-style mistake, then it would probably be better to pass on this prospective trade.
Will the Lakers ultimately make a move for LaVine when it’s all said and done? An answer one way or the other will emerge over the next few weeks.
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.