Trading the Farm for Anthony Davis!
The Lakers have a shot to land a top-five superstar by trading for Anthony Davis and need to pull the trigger regardless of the cost
The franchise-defining question the Los Angeles Lakers face as they approach the June 20 NBA Draft is just how much should they offer for Anthony Davis. The answer the Lakers desperately need to come up with is whatever it takes.
That’s the reality that the Lakers need to face as they search for a grand plan to resuscitate a struggling franchise many critics believe is on life support after six seasons of missing the playoffs and a litany of front office stumbles. The Lakers need to hit a home run and pairing the 26-year Anthony Davis with LeBron James would give them two of the best five players in the world and immediately transform them into legitimate championship contenders.
There’s no bigger prize this summer than the 26-year old Anthony Davis, a six-time NBA All-Star who’s been named to three All-NBA First Teams and three NBA All-Defensive Teams in his first seven years playing in the league. He boasts career averages of 23.7 points, 10.5 rebounds, 2.1 assists, 2.4 blocks, 1.4 steals in 34.6 minutes per game and shooting percentages of 51.7% from the field, 31.4% from beyond the arc, and 79.5% from the line.
Trading for the 6-foot-10, 253 pound Davis is the transcendent move the Lakers must make to free them from their demons and unlock the door to returning the franchise to relevance and restoring it to its storied greatness. It’s a move that needs to be made before the NBA Draft on June 20th so the Pelicans can select the player they prefer with the #4 pick. It’s a move the Lakers need to make even if it costs them Lonzo Ball and Brandon Ingram.
The Lakers need to realize that LeBron James is the only untouchable player on their roster and that landing a top-five superstar like Anthony Davis is an opportunity that only comes around once in a blue moon. While they need to negotiate the best deal they can, they can’t worry that giving up Lonzo Ball or Brandon Ingram, who might be superstars themselves one day, is too much to give up for a generational player like Anthony Davis. They just need to do it.
Everything becomes easy for the Lakers once they trade for Anthony Davis, who’s the bird in hand that opens up an array of team building opportunities. They can easily structure the trade so it meets the league’s salary matching rules and wait to execute it until after they’ve make moves in free agency, such as signing a third superstar or multiple top tier veteran role players to build a championship caliber starting lineup and deep and talented bench.
In fact, there’s nothing the Lakers could do that would help their chances of signing a top free agent this summer more than trading for Anthony Davis. Trading for Davis would immediately make the Lakers a more attractive landing spot not only for a superstar free agent but also for elite role players. It’s the move that would supercharge the Lakers’ opportunities in free agency, which is why the Lakers need make the trade regardless of what it cost them.
There are three packages the Lakers can offer the Pelicans for Anthony Davis that meet the league’s salary matching rules for teams that are over the cap. They can retain James and Ball and offer Ingram, Kuzma, Hart, Wagner, Bonga, and the #4 pick. Or they can retain James and Ingram and offer Ball, Kuzma, Hart, Wagner, Bonga, and the #4 pick. Or they could opt to retain Kuzma, Hart, Wagner, and Bonga and offer James, Ingram, and the #4 pick.
Each scenario other than keeping LeBron and Lonzo would enable the Lakers to trade for Anthony Davis and still have cap space to sign a third superstar. Keeping LeBron and Lonzo would only leave them around $1.5 million short. I’m not a fan of the three superstars and no depth scenario and would greatly prefer the Lakers using their $32 million left in cap space to surround LeBron James and Anthony Davis will a great starting lineup and deep strong bench.
Once the Lakers examine the various roadmaps that follow, it becomes very easy to understand why they should not hesitate to trade for Anthony Davis. It’s the only decision that guarantees a high degree of certainty and upside
If you enjoyed this article and would like to share your ideas and comments with other dedicated and intelligent Lakers fans, please join us on Lakerholics.Net.