The Los Angeles Lakers are not a good basketball team right now, holding a very poor 16-18 record in the Western Conference. With LeBron James on the roster, the Lakers will most likely make the playoffs although they will not get far if they do. Los Angeles cannot defend, play slow offense, and have a turnover-prone style of play. Not to mention, James is nearly 37 years old.
But LeBron's age means the Lakers need to make moves to compete right now, instead of waiting for this current roster to start clicking on both ends of the floor. With nearly half the season completed, we have a very good indication of what to expect from the Purple and Gold. Specifically, Los Angeles will be lucky to make the postseason and will suffer a first-round exit if they get there. There is no way they can compete with the Suns, Warriors, Bucks, Nets, and any other top team in the league.
Anthony Davis is currently injured and out for the next month or so, and he has not been a dominant player when healthy this season. If the Lakers want to make major moves, they should consider moving Davis for a chance to bolster the roster. LeBron is untouchable and Russell Westbrook’s contract is almost untradable, meaning Davis needs to be the man to be moved if the Lakers want to start making a run for the championship again. Here are the 5 best trade packages for Anthony Davis that the Lakers might have to accept.
Trade Package: John Collins, Bogdan Bogdanovic, Cam Reddish, 2022 First-Round Pick, 2023 First-Round Pick, 2023 Second-Round Pick for Anthony Davis
The Atlanta Hawks are a very solid the led by their superstar Trae Young. The point guard is averaging 27.3 PPG and 9.3 APG this year, solid numbers for a bonafide All-Star in the Eastern Conference. Looking at Atlanta’s roster, they could use another superstar player to take them over the top. Last year, as currently constructed, Atlanta made the Eastern Conference Finals but were nowhere near as good as the eventual champion Milwaukee Bucks. This year, we are seeing much of the same.
The Hawks currently have a 15-17 record and do not seem like a contender like the Bucks and Nets are in the East. John Collins is a very solid starter, putting up 17.6 PPG and 7.9 RPG for the Hawks as a rim-runner and lob partner for Trae Young. But he can be danged as bait because he is young (24) and has a very high ceiling, while Bogdanovic and Reddish bring outside shooting and size.
For the Lakers, the franchise will acquire three players who bring size and outside shooting; ingredients the team desperately need. Los Angeles will be giving up the most talented player, but 3 players coming at the expense of 1 could be in their cards after a putrid start to their season. For the Hawks, a Big Three of Young, Collins, and Clint Capela makes them a great team in the East.
New York Knicks
Trade Package: Julius Randle, Mitchell Robinson, Evan Fournier, 2022 First-Round Pick, 2023 First-Round Pick for Anthony Davis
The New York Knicks have always needed a superstar since Carmelo Anthony left the team a few years ago. Without disrespect to Julius Randle, New York need a generational talent that can score and dominate other areas of the floor. Randle is having a solid season by putting up 19.9 PPG, 9.8 RPG, 5.1 APG, and 0.7 SPG for a Knicks squad that is fighting for a playoff spot. As currently constructed, New York will never make it out the first round of the playoffs.
If the Knicks make a blockbuster move to save salary and acquire Anthony Davis, they are on the right track to start attracting free agents and building around other parts such as Immanuel Quickley, RJ Barrett, Kemba Walker, and Derrick Rose. With Davis at the core of the Knicks, New York will have a very intriguing roster that could make a bigger splash in the future. But the Lakers benefit most at his moment, thanks to the improved depth they will get in return.
The Lakers have not found any consistency whatsoever, and giving up Anthony Davis could rediscover the player’s best form again. It has not happened with the Lakers, but Julius Randle could be the perfect partner for LeBron James and Russell Westbrook. Randle was a former Laker, and he could be hungry to prove himself with the franchise. As a forward who scores inside, outside, and can carry an offense; he can carry a load when LeBron James is resting.
Trade Package: Karl-Anthony Towns, 2022 First-Round Pick for Anthony Davis
The Minnesota Timberwolves are at risk of losing Karl-Anthony Towns because their franchise player has clearly had enough of losing games. Towns is having another All-Star worthy season by averaging 24.5 PPG, 9.1 RPG, 3.6 APG, and 1.1 BPG for the team that drafted him. But if Towns wants out, it will hurt the team to hold onto him by force. Anthony Edwards is slowly becoming the franchise star for Minnesota, averaging 22.1 PPG 5.8 RPG in his second year. An explosive athlete with scoring ability, only one could imagine a pairing with Anthony Davis and Edwards.
Davis and Edwards could form one of the best duos in the NBA, while D’Angelo Russell completes a strong Big Three. Replacing a wantaway Towns with Anthony Davis is hardly a bad move because the latter is only 28 years old and has at least 4-5 more years at an elite level. To start winning games and making the playoffs again, Minnesota could make this move because the Lakers will most likely never reject.
Los Angeles are losing games, and they have doubts about Anthony Davis’ motivation after winning the chip in 2020. With LeBron getting closer to age 37, the Lakers need to make a change immediately. Karl-Anthony Towns is only 26 years old and could bring a motivated figure in the Lakers locker room. Towns and Davis bring similar things to the court, but this swap could shake up the roster and create a new Big Three. LeBron James tends to make players around him better, so Towns could be a much more formidable force in Los Angeles. If the Lakers need a scoring big man that can space the floor, Towns is a priority.
Trade Package: Bam Adebayo, Duncan Robinson, Caleb Martin, Gabe Vincent for Anthony Davis
The Miami Heat will not be looking to make any major moves, but a player like Anthony Davis does not come around often. The Heat currently hold the 4th seed in the East, an impressive standing, but Davis could catapult them to the top. Jimmy Butler is a great offensive player, but he is mainly known as a defensive star who would prosper as the second option. Bam Adebayo is a sensational talent and defensive player, but Anthony Davis is a much more proficient offensive force.
Bam is averaging 18.7 PPG, 10.2 RPG, 3.2 APG, and 1.1 SPG in 18 games played. Adebayo has not been at full health, but even if he is, he will likely never be as dominant as Anthony Davis is. For Miami, Anthony Davis forms the best Big Three (with Kyrie Irving only playing away games) with Butler and Kyle Lowry. Losing Duncan Robinson will hurt, but Tyler Herro can immediately fill in the void. As a whole, Miami needs to acquire a once-in-a-generation talent to take their level to the top spot in the East.
Meanwhile, in Los Angeles, acquiring a defensive star in Bam and one of the best three-point shooters in the league will make the Lakers a better team. LeBron James needs help with shooting and defense, things Bam and Robinson bring at an elite level. Bam can’t create his offense as well as Davis, but he can defend the rim just as well if not better. Duncan Robinson becomes a starter for the Lakers immediately because The King and Russell Westbrook will create open looks for him. If the Lakers pull the plug on Davis, Bam and Robinson along with 2 young players is hardly a bad return.
Golden State Warriors
Trade Package: James Wiseman, Draymond Green, Jordan Poole for Anthony Davis
The Golden State Warriors probably do not need to make changes right now because they hold the best record in the Western Conference with a 27-6 record. But the NBA Finals does not start now, and the Warriors have a ton to prove if they want to compete with the Suns, Bucks, and Nets later in the playoffs. Klay Thompson’s return is imminent, and the duo with Stephen Curry will form the base for a championship side. But adding Anthony Davis makes the Warriors as good on paper as the Nets and Bucks.
Davis is an incredibly talented offensive player who brings size on defense, replacing James Wiseman and Draymond Green on both ends of the court. Wiseman has yet to play a game this season, and Green is getting older. Jordan Poole, one of the contenders for Most Improved Player, is also a valuable asset. Losing Poole will hurt, but acquiring Anthony Davis to complete a lineup with Curry, Thompson, Andrew Wiggins, and Otto Porter Jr would be intriguing to watch. Golden State cannot rest on their laurels, and Anthony Davis could create another superteam for the first time since Kevin Durant played his last season in Oakland.
For the Lakers, this move also makes a lot of sense. Draymond Green is a tremendous defender, passer, and competitor who is on the same page as LeBron James. They will make smart plays on the court, act as extensions of Frank Vogel, and bring championship experience. James Wiseman, when he returns, can bring size and talent at the center spot. Poole is averaging 17.9 PPG on 33.8% 3-point shooting, and would immediately become the Lakers’ best shooting guard. A lineup with Westbrook, Poole, LeBron, Green, and Wiseman would most likely be enough to help the Lakers grab a top-4 seed in the West and make a Finals run.