Suggested Lakers Trade Proposal for All-Star Forward is A Terrible Idea

The Los Angeles Lakers are about to have one active offseason. They are yet to announce their next head coach but regardless of who that will be, the Lakers will be one of the busiest teams in the NBA this summer.

The No. 1 priority for the Lakers is obviously re-signing LeBron James. The 39-year-old superstar will likely opt out of his player option to become a free agent and land a multi-year deal. In order to convince him to stay in Los Angeles, the Lakers front office has to improve the roster around him to give him a chance to contend.

At the same time, they need to make sure that they acquire the right player. They have previously made the mistake of opting for talent over fit when they traded for Russell Westbrook in 2021. They can’t afford to do the same again.

Greg Swartz of Bleacher Report, however, suggests that they do exactly that. In a recent piece, he identifies DeMar DeRozan as a potential trade target for the Lakers this offseason.

Going home to Los Angeles in a sign-and-trade with the Lakers could work if D’Angelo Russell turns down his $18.7 million player option and Los Angeles sends some combination of Rui Hachimura ($17 million), Austin Reaves ($12.9 million), Gabe Vincent ($11.0 million) and Jarred Vanderbilt ($10.7 million) back in return.Greg Swartz, Bleacher Report

As good as DeRozan is as a player, this would be a complete disaster for the Lakers. The six-time All-Star turns 35 before the start of the season and he will likely require around $25-30 million per year.

DeRozan is a valuable scorer but he is a one-way player. Not only is he a big defensive liability, but he also can’t shoot the three on the other end. This makes him a tough fit on both ends of the floor.

LeBron and Anthony Davis need players who can play off-ball and provide spacing. DeRozan can’t do that at all. Due to his shooting limitations, he needs the ball in his hands at all times. He is good at scoring from mid-range but doesn’t help you in other areas offensively.

The Lakers need to target shooters and high-level defenders. Ideally, they should try to get both in one player, also known as a three-and-D player. DeRozan is the farthest player from that prototype and the Lakers should stay away from another Westbrook-esque experiment.

 

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