NBA Rumors: Bojan Bogdanovic Expected to Be Next Jazz Player Traded Amid Lakers Buzz

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVSeptember 19, 2022

BERLIN, GERMANY - SEPTEMBER 11: Bojan Bogdanovic of Croatia   during the FIBA EuroBasket 2022 round of 16 match between Finland and Croatia at EuroBasket Arena Berlin on September 11, 2022 in Berlin, Germany. (Photo by Pedja Milosavljevic/DeFodi Images via Getty Images)
Pedja Milosavljevic/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

Don't be surprised if Bojan Bogdanovic is the next Utah Jazz veteran to be moved this offseason after Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell were traded.

According to Michael Scotto of HoopsHype: "A lot of executives around the league are expecting Bogdanovic to be the next guy for the Jazz to get moved. They [rival executives] are keeping tabs on guys like Jordan Clarkson and Malik Beasley, but Bogdanovic is the next domino that most people think is going to fall for Utah."

Don't be shocked if the Los Angeles Lakers come calling. By most accounts, those talks have already been happening.

Last week, Jovan Buha and Sam Amick of The Athletic reported that the team has "targeted Bogdanovic, Clarkson and Beasley" in trade talks, which would in theory send back Russell Westbrook and draft capital to the Jazz.

Surely the Jazz would target the two future first-round picks the Lakers could part with in a trade in such a deal.

While Westbrook has proven to be a poor fit next to LeBron James and Anthony Davis—given his ball-dominant play style clashing with James' playmaking abilities, his lack of perimeter shooting that shrinks the floor and his inconsistent on-ball defense—the Jazz trio would make far more sense in complementary roles.

Bogdanovic in particular would provide a bit of perimeter scoring and floor spacing. The 33-year-old averaged 18.1 points and 4.3 rebounds for the Jazz last season, shooting 45.5 percent from the field and 38.7 percent from three.

For his career, he's shot 39.2 percent from beyond the arc, making him the sort of role player that James has traditionally played well alongside.

Bogdanovic has his weaknesses. His lack of athleticism makes him a suspect defender out on the perimeter, for one. But his catch-and-shoot game would open up a lot in the Lakers' offense after the team had major floor-spacing and shooting issues in last year's disastrous 33-49 campaign.

Of course, that will make him attractive to other contenders around the league looking to improve their roster as well. But while those teams may have trouble matching his $19.5 million salary in deals without giving away valuable players, the Lakers have a $47 million black hole on their roster they could part with in a potential deal.