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The Los Angeles Lakers have started 10-10, which is far from what the team envisioned over the summer.
Los Angeles has championship aspirations, but it has not resembled a championship-caliber team with the on-court chemistry demonstrated so far on both ends of the floor.
Though injuries and setbacks have certainly affected how strong L.A. could be right now, browsing the trade market could be an option if the Lakers think the roster needs more changing.
In a new Bleacher Report article that lists trade targets for each team, three players were tied to the Lakers, starting with Detroit Pistons forward Jerami Grant:
The Lakers probably blocked themselves from making major moves when they dumped their remaining resources into the Russell Westbrook trade, but the one exception would be dealing Talen Horton-Tucker once he is trade eligible in mid-January.
His youth, defensive versatility and flashes of shot-creation could entice a future-focused shopper, and while he couldn’t anchor a deal for an elite, combining him with a sweetener or two might be enough for Jerami Grant. The Pistons must decide sooner than later if they want to cover the cost of Grant’s 2023 free agency, and if they don’t, the Lakers could grab him to up their athleticism, defense and scoring on the wing.
The other two players were Sacramento Kings guard Terence Davis and Portland Trail Blazers guard Ben McLemore:
It’s far more likely L.A. can only pursue deeply discounted players, so fliers on Terence Davis and Ben McLemore might be the best it can do. Neither is doing much at the moment, but Davis has shown three-and-D chops before, and McLemore has historically shot the three at a decent clip.
Among these three options. Grant is by far the best player. He’s a top scoring option for Detroit, and though he hasn’t been as efficient this year as last year, he would provide a tremendous presence at both ends for the Lakers with his size and versatility.
However, he’s making $20 million a year, which would require the Lakers to part ways with Talen Horton-Tucker and Kendrick Nunn to match the salaries.
Davis is a name Bleacher Report mentioned before, but he’s not a rotation player with the Kings. He’s a 6-foot-4 guard that has struggled on both ends of the floor this year, so the Lakers would be better off passing on that.
Then, there’s McLemore, who the Lakers let walk in free agency this summer. He signed a one-year deal for the minimum to go to Portland but also isn’t a member of the rotation. The Lakers already experimented with him, so bringing him back wouldn’t make sense.
Grant is the top choice here, but the Lakers still have time to determine if moves will be made as the trade deadline approaches in a few months.