First, let’s start off with a basic acknowledgement: The Los Angeles Lakers have one of the league’s most unappealing rosters when it comes to common-sense horse trading.
The face of the franchise, Kobe Bryant, isn’t going anywhere. He just signed a new two-year extension that will take him to retirement with the only team he’s ever played for in the NBA. Plus, he has a no-trade clause.
Pau Gasol is the team’s second-leading scorer, as well as its second-most expensive player. He does have an expiring contract, however, and remains the subject of speculation.
Nobody knows whether Steve Nash will ever play again. and after that, the Lakers' financial numbers go into a steep dive. It’s not that there aren’t Lakers who would appeal to other teams. It’s that the Lakers got them on the dirt-cheap, and as a result, it’s nearly impossible to get value back in return for them.
Nonetheless, it’s that time of year, with the trade deadline’s just about two months away. As Eric Pincus of the Los Angeles Times points out, a number of recently signed players on the Lakers roster just became trade eligible:
If the Lakers have any intention to make a deal before the Feb. 20 trade deadline, a number of players on the roster just became trade eligible. In most cases, free agents signed during the off-season cannot be traded until Dec. 15.
This applies to Chris Kaman, Nick Young, Jordan Farmar, Wesley Johnson, Shawne Williams, Robert Sacre and Xavier Henry.
Of course, just because they’re eligible, doesn’t make them all appealing options. Here then, is a ranking of a select group from the Purple and Gold who could conceivably be in the mix, most likely in some sort of combination.
*Basketball salaries from ShamSports
**Statistics from Basketball-Reference