Lakers Rumors: Fallout from Anthony Davis Trade, Pursuit of Kawhi Leonard

Ryan McCrystal@@ryan_mccrystalFeatured ColumnistJune 29, 2019

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 27: Anthony Davis #23 of the New Orleans Pelicans drives to the basket against the Los Angeles Lakers on February 27, 2019 at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, California. 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. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Chris Elise/NBAE via Getty Images)
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The Los Angeles Lakers have been at the center of the NBA offseason so far, most notably for their acquisition of Anthony Davis from the New Orleans Pelicans.

Acquiring Davis is obviously the most important move of the Lakers' offseason, but Davis and LeBron James can't win a championship by themselves. The more difficult portion of general manager Rob Pelinka's offseason is arguably just getting started as he attempts to fill out the remaining roster spots and build around his two stars with limited resources.

On Friday, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported the Lakers are shipping Mo Wagner, Isaac Bonga and Jemerrio Jones to the Washington Wizards in a move that would officially make the Davis trade a three-way deal. This addition to the trade was completed to clear more cap space for Los Angeles.

In a corresponding move, the Lakers also convinced Davis to waive his $4 million trade bonus, which helped clear enough room for Los Angeles to potentially sign another max contract free agent.

So with Davis on his way to L.A. and enough cap space cleared for another max deal, what's next for the Lakers?

The Lakers first order of business once free agency begins appears to be a pursuit of Kawhi Leonard, who is coming off leading the Toronto Raptors to their first NBA Championship.

Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports reported Leonard intends to meet with both the Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers in the upcoming days.

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

Kawhi intends to meet with Lakers and Clippers when free agency starts, per @ChrisBHaynes https://t.co/rARjwAVCoD

And, because nothing involving the Lakers can happen without some added drama, former team president Magic Johnson has apparently been inserted into the mix again.

According to ESPN's Ramona Shelburne, Magic said that Leonard requested his presence at the meeting with Los Angeles. Since Johnson is a Lakers legend, this wouldn't be entirely unprecedented if he hadn't just exited his role with the team.

However, as Shelburne reported, "the league has specifically told the Lakers that Johnson can't be a formal part of the free-agency process" due to him exiting his official role with the organization this past spring.

Another alternative for the Lakers, rather than locking up a player such as Kawhi to a max contract, could be to spread that money out to multiple players on smaller deals. However, that path recently got a little more difficult to navigate due to the unexpected retirement of former Indiana Pacers point guard Darren Collison.

According to ESPN's Dave McMenamin, Collison was previously a potential target of the Lakers if they chose to divide their cap space over multiple veteran contracts.

Another less expensive veteran option for the Lakers is DeAndre Jordon, who spent the first 10 years of his career in Los Angeles with the Clippers.

ESPN's Shelburne and Brian Windhorst reported that Jordan is expected to be pursued by the Lakers. However, they also noted that Jordan is good friends with free agent Kevin Durant and will also be a candidate to team up with the Warriors star this offseason.

Regardless of how the Lakers end up spending the rest of their cap space, it's sure to be a wild offseason ride for Lakers fans with their team at the center of the basketball universe once again.