Lakers Trade Rumors: Hottest Reports Surrounding Los Angeles
The Los Angeles Lakers are in the middle of a three-game losing streak and are without injured superstars LeBron James and Anthony Davis. To say that things could be better would be an understatement.
Still, Los Angeles shouldn't quite be in panic mode. As long as the Lakers can make the postseason, their title hopes should remain alive.
"Sources across the league expressed skepticism that LeBron James' high ankle sprain would result in any increased urgency among contenders to add talent," ESPN's Zach Lowe wrote. "Rivals are operating under the assumption James will be 100 percent for the playoffs and the Los Angeles Lakers as formidable as ever."
It wouldn't be a surprise to see the Lakers make a move or two before Thursday's deadline to help ensure they do indeed make the playoffs.
Here, we'll dig into the latest pre-deadline buzz.
Lakers Could Be In on Kyle Lowry
Toronto point guard Kyle Lowry is one of the biggest names remaining on the trade market. He's previously been linked to the Miami Heat and the Philadelphia 76ers. ESPN's Brian Windhorst said the following on The Hoop Collective (h/t Bleacher Report's Rob Goldberg):
"Kyle Lowry's free agency is happening right now. The expectation is that Kyle Lowry is going to have a new contract by the end of this week. It's either going to be to stay in Toronto—whether it's signed or an understanding that it's going to happen—it's going to be Miami or it's going to be Philadelphia. Those are the three options."
However, it now looks like Los Angeles could also be in on the Lowry chase.
"Here's one team that don't rule out of this one between now and the trade deadline: the Lakers," ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski said on the Woj and Lowe Trade Deadline Special (h/t Christian Rivas of Silver Screen and Roll).
Landing Lowry would be a mild surprise, as the Lakers aren't exactly loaded with tradable assets. If they could pull this one off, however, it would be huge.
Lakers Could Be Favorites for Andre Drummond
If Los Angeles doesn't make a move before the trade deadline, it might make one after via the buyout market. Cleveland Cavaliers center Andre Drummond is widely expected to reach a buyout, and the Lakers could be the front-runners to land him.
According to Bleacher Report's Jake Fischer, many around the league expect Drummond to land with L.A. if a buyout occurs:
"Contenders such as the Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets have been bullish that Cleveland will fall short of finding a trade, leading to Drummond's agreeing to a buyout and becoming an unrestricted free agent just like Griffin before him. At this juncture, you'd be hard-pressed to find an executive who doesn't believe Drummond would join the Lakers in that scenario, as a starting role would likely be waiting for him."
Los Angeles will have competition if Drummond becomes available. However, at least one potential suitor appears to be out of the market.
If Drummond does become available, expect Los Angeles to make its own push to add him.
Montrezl Harrell, KCP Could Be Available
The Lakers may have to sell off a few pieces if they do make a deadline deal. Fischer recently mentioned the center Montrezl Harrell as a possibility when discussing the Charlotte Hornets' search for frontcourt depth.
"Charlotte has also called the Lakers about Montrezl Harrell, Los Angeles' bruising center, sources said, and the reigning champions appear willing to entertain offers," Fischer wrote.
More recently, O'Connor and Chris Vernon of The Ringer declared that both Harrell and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope could be available and wrote that the Lakers "are still interested in Andre Drummond."