This past Sunday night Los Angeles Lakers big man Anthony Davis aggravated his right Achilles tendinosis in a showdown against the Denver Nuggets.
An MRI on Monday revealed that there was no rupture, but the Lakers nevertheless have opted to shelve the 27-year-old for at least three weeks. The decision makes sense, given that even before getting hurt, Davis was in such bad shape that even Draymond Green called him out over it.
A few days before that, New York Knicks center Mitchell Robinson suffered a fractured right hand during a showdown against the Washington Wizards. A timeline for his return has yet to be announced.
Based on these untimely injuries, it’s clear why both the Lakers and Knicks are in the hunt for a big man.
There are currently two viable options on the table for both squads.
According to Marc Berman of the New York Post, one option is Orlando Magic center Mo Bamba.
“Bamba could be a future trade target,” he wrote. “The New York native and fifth pick of the 2018 NBA Draft has yet to make his mark in Orlando. Bamba is in and out of the rotation, playing in just 12 games this season. Bamba is 22 and the Knicks looked to trade up in that draft to get the former Texas Longhorns star. The Lakers also reportedly have interest.”
Bamba has averaged 4.9 points and 3.7 boards in 12 games for the Magic this year, but put up 12.9 points, 10.5 rebounds, and 3.7 blocks per game on 54% shooting during his time in Texas. Clearly the promise is there – it’s just a matter of activating it in the right situation.
Jeanie Buss shoots her shot with the GOAT.https://t.co/Nmu4oJAf7w
— Game 7 (@game7__) February 17, 2021
If not Bamba, Cleveland Cavaliers center Andre Drummond is also an option for both LA and New York. He was linked to the Lakers earlier this week, and is said to be intrigued by the prospect of joining the Knicks.
According to NBA insider Sam Amico, “Drummond supposedly would be just fine with landing with the New York Knicks.”
Drummond is averaging 17.5 points and 13.5 rebounds per game for Cleveland this year. He would immediately upgrade either the Lakers or Knicks, although obviously only one of those two teams would actually afford him an opportunity to contend for a championship.
Klay knows how to do Valentine’s Day right. https://t.co/Gxt1gRLTX2
— Game 7 (@game7__) February 15, 2021
There are players on the periphery that both the Lakers and Knicks have also been mentioned alongside, but they don’t address their newfound holes in the paint.
Clearly, however, shoring up the middle is the main priority for both squads right now – and that can only be done by acquiring either Bamba or Drummond.
Which player will ultimately land with which team? Time will tell.