L.A. Lakers Must Make a Trade at the Deadline

Sammy SucuSenior Analyst IMarch 14, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 07: Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers adjusts his mask during the closing moments of the Lakers 106-101 loss to the Washington Wizards at the Verizon Center on March 7, 2012 in Washington, DC. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
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The Los Angeles Lakers should not stay as is at the trade deadline.

Although the Lakers have been playing well as of late, they are not playing well enough to compete for an NBA title.

With a 26-16 record, the Lake Show sit at top of the Pacific Division and third in the Western Conference. Their record may look good, but their road record is an abysmal 8-14. That needs to change.

It may be unreasonable to believe that the Lakers will catch up to the San Antonio Spurs and Oklahoma City Thunder—they will likely stay in third place—which spells doom for Lakers fans.  It will be nearly impossible to defeat the Thunder or the Spurs in a seven-game series—especially without home-court advantage. The Lakers need to make change if they want to have a fighting chance against either of the two teams.

Although the Lakers need to make a change, it does not have to be a drastic one.

With the news of Dwight Howard opting in to his contract and the high level of play from Andrew Bynum, it seems as if the Lake Show will continue on with the Bynum. This is good news for Lakers fans because Bynum is playing at a higher level than Howard as of late—he also makes his free throws.

The Lakers should not be focusing on upgrading their frontcourt. They need to focus on their biggest weakness: the point guard position.

The Lakers and Cleveland Cavaliers are in talks for Ramon Sessions once again, according to ESPN's Marc Stein, who credited ESPN Los Angeles' Dave McMenamin for the break.

The Lakers and Cleveland Cavaliers recently tried to resuscitate a deal that would have sent point guard Ramon Sessions to L.A. by bringing the Rockets into the mix as a third-team facilitator.

The source said that the Lakers, in that proposal, would have received Sessions from Cleveland and future considerations from Houston, with the Rockets receiving one of the Lakers' two 2012 first-rounders and the Cavaliers landing Houston guard Jonny Flynn to back up Kyrie Irving at the point.

This deal makes perfect sense for the Lakers because he will provide them with a talented point guard that will be able to defend against the other elite guards in the West. Sessions numbers may not stand out to Lakers fans, but that is because he has never been a consistent starter. In his five-year career, Sessions has averaged 14.8 points and 7.5 assists per game as a starter. If Sessions can provide the Lakers with those numbers as their starter, they will be impossible to beat.

The Lakers also need to improve their small forward position with someone who can score when Kobe is having an off night—enter Michael Beasley.

According to a report from Scott Schroeder of SB Nation Minnesota, there have been talks of a three-way trade between Portland, Minnesota and Los Angeles.

It's unclear what the Lakers would have to give up in the new deal that Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski reported on Wednesday afternoon. Whatever it is likely won't involve the Wolves as they're set to receive Jamal Crawford from the Portland Trail Blazers and send away Beasley, meaning their involvement likely won't involve any other major parts unless it's a larger trade than currently reported.

This would be a perfect marriage between the Lakers and Beasley. B-Easy would be able to provide the Lakers with that scoring option at small forward, and the Lakers would provide him with the confidence he needs to play at a high level.

Beasley was the second pick in the 2009 NBA draft, and he had very high expectations. He has not been able to live up to those yet, but with Kobe and the Lakers coaching staff, he has the best chance to do that in Los Angeles.

If the Lakers are able to pull off two trades that would bring Sessions and Beaseley in, they will have the best starting five in the NBA—they will also be very tough to beat.The bench will also improve because Metta World Peace and Matt Barnes will be the leaders of the second unit. Lakers fans know how bad they need more consistent bench play, and these trades will help them in that department. 

Without a trade, the Lakers will likely be eliminated in the second round of the NBA playoffs. They might be able to pull off a trade in the summer, but the Lakers are not getting any younger—that window is closing very fast. The only way to open that window for another couple of years is to bring in Beasley and Sessions to help build around Bynum, and help the Lakers win a ring or two while Kobe is still around.

The Lake Show must not stay quiet at the trade deadline, but there is no reason for them to be excessively loud either.


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