L.A. Lakers Trade Speculation: Raymond Felton and Bench Boosters Could Help L.A.

John CarterContributor IIIMarch 16, 2011

Felton feels backstabbed by New York's decision to trade him, in the middle of his breakout season.
Felton feels backstabbed by New York's decision to trade him, in the middle of his breakout season.Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

I've been playing around with the NBA Hollinger Trade Machine, and I've found an interesting trade.

Yes, it involves letting our beloved Lamar Odom go, but hear me out before you label this article nuts.

With this trade, we (the Lakers) would gain a point guard who has All-Star level potential.

Calm now? Okay, now listen.

As much as I love Lamar Odom's play this season, this deal vastly improves the Lakers. Lamar's versatility and skillset locks him as a starter on most NBA teams. He would be an attractive piece to a Denver Nuggets team who may keep him as a major piece to the team, or trade for younger pieces.

Wherever he goes, Lamar Odom is going to be a great contributor and will have a huge impact to that squad's success. He will be a HOT trade piece.

His talents are often overlooked because he is behind All-Star Pau Gasol and young hotshot Andrew Bynum in the rotation. Yes, you could say Lamar loves the limelight and attention in Los Angeles, but what would his maximum potential be in Denver?

This trade would involve the Trailblazers as well. Portland has an important piece that the Lakers would love to have as well: a back-up to Kobe Bryant. Rudy Fernandez has that job.

So without further ado, here is the trade:


The Los Angeles Lakers receive:

Raymond Felton (Via DEN): 17.1 ppg, 8.7 apg, 1.8 spg and has been 44 percent from the field and 44 percent from three-point in the last nine games.

Rudy Fernandez (Via POR): 9.2 ppg, 2.5 apg, 1 spg and a career 40 percent from the field and 37 percent from three.


The Denver Nuggets receive:

Lamar Odom (Via LAL): 14.4 ppg, 8.7 rpg, 2.9 apg, 54 percent FG and 38 percent from the arc.


The Portland Trailblazers receive:

Derrick Caracter and Devin Ebanks (Via LAL): Both players with great potential, but are stuck in Phil's doghouse.


Could it happen? I don't know.

Denver has a younger clone of Raymond Felton in the name of Ty Lawson, so they might like to move him. With Roy and Oden scarred by injuries, building up the youth in Portland doesn't seem so bad.

And hell, the Lakers desperately need a point guard who can run with a tleast Steve Nash?

The trade fits perfectly and the reasons aren't bad.

Los Angeles would get a young star in Raymond Felton. Felton's only 26, with a whole lot of upside. Can you imagine this speedy blur if he develops the killer instinct that Kobe Bryant spreads? Yeah, there's no stopping Felton.

Imagine a prime Felton and a prime Bynum playing together, while Kobe Bryant and Gasol sit back and relax as the Lakers prevail in the NBA again.

L.A. would also get a young and proven player in Rudy Fernandez. Given limited minutes, he gives good numbers. The capable scorer in Fernandez has got his athleticism, long range and overall charisma yearned for by many other teams. Kobe would get his well deserved rest, as Rudy Fernandez and Shannon Brown could take over for some time.

Let's face it, Rudy Fernandez is a better player than Brown. He's also familiar with fellow Spaniard Pau Gasol, so chemistry problems might not be a huge problem. Hopefully, Devin Ebanks and Derrick Caracter may develop up in Portland.

Given that they have enough upside to surpass their oft-comparisons Trevor Ariza and Glen Davis, Portland won't be losing too much.

Denver would add Lamar Odom to their lineup, who could guide and have an influence over the younger Nuggets players who also have great potential.