The Los Angeles Lakers are a contending team when completely healthy. The LeBron James and Anthony Davis pairing has already resulted in one championship: perhaps it could result in more. While the Los Angeles Lakers are a good team currently, there are still some needs on the team that need to be addressed.
The Los Angeles Lakers could elect to make some moves before the trade deadline: however, it remains to be seen who they target to bolster their roster. There are a few players around the league that could be available. Here are three realistic and three unrealistic targets for the Los Angeles Lakers.
3. P. J. Tucker
P. J. Tucker has been known around the league as a solid veteran who is an elite multipositional defender. He notably played the center position for the D’Antoni Rockets just last season, and he is a versatile player who could help any defense. On the Los Angeles Lakers, he would be a solid defender off of the bench. His floor spacing could also be useful when playing next to LeBron James.
Several rival executives expect P.J. Tucker to eventually end up in Philadelphia, whether in a buyout or a trade that nets Houston a second-round pick
— NBA Central (@TheNBACentral) March 5, 2021
Despite the fact that his fit with the Los Angeles Lakers would be good, Tucker is an unrealistic target for them. P. J. Tucker has been linked with the Philadelphia 76ers, and his fit there would also be amazing. He also has a prior relationship with Daryl Morey, which could be a deciding factor. The Lakers would be an appealing destination, but so far it seems like Philadelphia is in the lead.
2. Blake Griffin
Blake Griffin is one of the hot names in free agency after his buyout agreement with the Detroit Pistons. While Blake Griffin is no longer the high-flying All-Star he once was, he is still an elite veteran that could contribute to a contending roster. Blake Griffin has become a solid floor spacer over the years, as well as being a solid interior defender. Blake Griffin’s fit with the Los Angeles Lakers would be good, as they currently need a big man.
The Brooklyn Nets are believed to be leaders to sign six-time All-Star Blake Griffin, sources tell me and @JLEdwardsIII. Rival teams with interest are expecting Griffin to choose Nets as a title favorite for chance to win a championship.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) March 5, 2021
A lot of contenders have been interested in Blake Griffin, but it seems as though he will join up with the Brooklyn Nets. The Brooklyn Nets have 3 superstars, so it would make sense for Blake Griffin to go there. Griffin would be able to compete for a championship there. While he would fulfill a need for the Lakers, it seems that he is an unrealistic target.
1. Andre Drummond
Andre Drummond would be a top-tier target for any team. Andre Drummond is easily one of the best rebounders in the league and offers an athletic rim protector on the inside. Drummond is a multiple-time All-Star and would help the Los Angeles Lakers fill Anthony Davis’s minutes in the immediate term.
Andre Drummond would be an elite addition to the Lakers, but so far, his situation isn’t that clear. Andre Drummond was linked to the Miami Heat and the Brooklyn Nets earlier in the trade season. While the Los Angeles Lakers could get him, it is a long shot.
3. JJ Redick
JJ Redick is an elite shooter. Good shooters often pair well with wizard playmakers like LeBron James. Redick would bring an insane off-ball presence to the Los Angeles Lakers, and he would space the floor at a high-level. JJ Redick is a smart veteran who would most certainly get minutes on the Lakers. It was only last season that he was averaging 15.3 PPG, and he could be a solid bench-scoring presence.
The Pelicans have been rumored to have contacted teams about trading away some of their veterans. JJ Redick’s name was on that list. He is a realistic target for the Los Angeles Lakers, as they have the assets to trade for him. Redick has been linked to the Lakers before, so Los Angeles could be in the running here.
2. DeMarcus Cousins
DeMarcus Cousins is one of the most realistic targets for the Los Angeles Lakers. DeMarcus Cousins has notably signed with the Los Angeles Lakers before, and he could re-join a championship-caliber team. Cousins would provide an elite center for the Lakers, and playing in Los Angeles can provide him with the biggest spotlight to prove that he still has something left in the tank.
Cousins could potentially play the Dwight Howard role from the championship-winning squad from last season. DeMarcus Cousins would be playing against certain matchups that involve talented big men, such as the Denver Nuggets. DeMarcus Cousins can still excel as a player, as he still has an amazing skill set as a big man who can shoot and defend. The fit is there, though it remains to be seen whether Cousins will come back to Los Angeles.
1. Hassan Whiteside
Hassan Whiteside could quite possibly be the best target for the Los Angeles Lakers based on fit, and how much the Lakers would have to send out to get him. Hassan Whiteside is an elite rebounder and rim protector. It was only last season when he was averaging a double-double with the Portland Trail Blazers. Whiteside would be a perfect athletic center to join the Lakers.
Hassan Whiteside has been linked to the Los Angeles Lakers throughout the season, and he could be a steal for the Los Angeles Lakers if they were to get him in a trade. Hassan Whiteside would shore up their defense and could be pivotal in filling Davis’s athletic presence and rim presence while Davis recovers from injury. Whiteside would be a great addition to an already great roster, and perhaps playing with LeBron James would get the best out of him.