Trae Young’s Atlanta Hawks and the Los Angeles Lakers are both in the midst of very intense first-round NBA playoff battles.
Despite that, some parties seem to be looking ahead to what will occur this summer.
Last week reports surfaced that Atlanta was seriously looking into possibly trading Young in the near future. The veracity of these rumors was so intense that even Young himself came out and commented on them.
On Friday, the Lakers were added to this already complicated equation.
According to NBA insider Sean Deveney, a league executive told him that L.A. is a potential suitor to keep an eye on going forward.
“They went out and got tradeable pieces,” the exec told Deveney.
“If the Hawks don’t make a move in the summer, the Lakers would be a possibility next season. It would take a lot, and things would have to align just right for that,” he continued.
“I also don’t buy that every guy who signs with Klutch is going to the Lakers, that is obviously not the case. But this is one they have been watching.
“The Hawks could look into the market on Young, but the thing is, it is not going to be as strong as they’d like. He has flaws, a lot of them, and they’ve sort of been exposed in the last couple of years. I am not sure how many real bidders Atlanta would get if they put him on the market, but it probably not as many as they think.”
The flaws in question when it comes to Young is that, while he fills up the stat sheet and is a talented distributor, he can be an extremely inefficient shooter and totally useless defensively.
Those aren’t exactly characteristics you want from a max-level guy.
That said, the real question L.A. would have to answer is whether Young is better than soon-to-be free agent D’Angelo Russell.
The latter’s postseason performance so far hasn’t been overly-impressive. Lakers cheerleaders’ provocative photos have left more of an impression on fans than Russell’s playoff contributions thus far.
This also isn’t the first time Young has been linked to the Lakers. They were one of four teams that expressed interest in him when chatter started about him possibly being on the trade block earlier this year.
One way or the other, the NBA playoffs will play themselves out over the next few weeks.
There’s a new Olivia Dunne in town. https://t.co/ktEAvcjmiW
— Game 7 (@game7__) April 20, 2023
The Lakers and Hawks will either advance or they won’t.
Once that is done, though – it will be fascinating to see how all parties involved proceed.
Could Young end up a member of the Lakers at some point in the foreseeable future? Time will tell.
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.