The Los Angeles Lakers could be going through a major roster overhaul over the next year or so. Magic Johnson has taken over as the President of Basketball Operations and his main goal is to bring the team back to prominence in the NBA, not only by winning but making the team a destination for the big names to go. Some roster manipulation might be how he does it.
Magic’s time with the Lakers so far has been full of rumors about what they will do with the second pick in the 2017 NBA Draft and if they will be trading for Paul George. While the future looks bright, they have a current roster they need to work with in order to make room for some of they look to bring to Staples Center.
While the Lakers appear to finally be set on Lonzo Ball at the second pick, they might also be looking to get back into the lottery. One method, without giving away any future picks, could be unloading some of their promising prospects. D’Angelo Russell and Julius Randle could be the two names the Lakers look to unload in part due to the Lakers not being too excited about their progress to this point.
ESPN senior writer Zach Lowe had a recent episode of the ‘Lowe Post’ with fellow ESPN writer Kevin Arnovitz and they discussed the Lakers assets for potential trades. The topic of D’Angelo Russell came up and according to Lowe, the Lakers aren’t too excited about his future.
The D’Angelo Russell part begins at about the 50 minutes mark of the show.
“…And to me, D’Angelo Russell is right now one of the more fascinating players in the league. Because he is…The Lakers internally are a little bit down on him. They sort of moved him around positionally last year although those titles between the one and the two don’t mean that much to me. He’s divisive when you bring him up to other teams. He’s divisive within the Lakers. He has knee issues in the rearview and… he had some injury issues last year. I don’t remember what they were off the top of my head. If I were another team and the medical checked out to the degree like I was satisfied with his condition. He would be a buy low candidate for me.”
There are definitely people inside the Lakers who are not sanguine…about his long-term path. Because of the defense, because he has struggled finishing at the rim in the NBA, his three-point shooting has gone up and down. And his, you know, his sort of general ‘what does he care about? Is he about the right stuff?’…
Shortly following that from Lowe, his ESPN colleague Ramona Shelburne reported the Lakers are looking to add another lottery pick in the 2017 NBA Draft.
The Los Angeles Lakers are trying to acquire another first-round pick for Thursday’s NBA draft, league sources told ESPN.
The Lakers have engaged at least two teams in the lottery, sources said, as they search for players to improve their outside shooting and perimeter defense.
Chad Ford, also from ESPN, speculates that D’Angelo Russell could be the target to go.
Sounds like Lakers are dangling D’Angelo Russell in effort to get another Top 12 pick. Luke Kennard & Zach Collins appear to be targets https://t.co/2NPeEKX4SM
— Chad Ford (@chadfordinsider) June 20, 2017