The Los Angeles Lakers are having a stressful offseason with putting the final touches on a roster around LeBron James and Anthony Davis. The Lakers haven't had much room to acquire top-tier talent and have had to make do with rotational players that will have a big role in LA.
The Lakers can alleviate some of their roster depth issues by moving off Russell Westbrook and acquiring 2 or 3 rotational players from teams that would be willing to part with players for picks and Westbrook's contract.
Jovan Buha, who also reports on the Lakers for The Athletic, spoke with Michael Scotto of HoopsHype about the Westbrook trade situation. Buha let Scotto and everyone else know that only the Indiana Pacers and the Utah Jazz would be possible suitors for Westbrook. However, Buha believes the Pacers may not be as interested anymore after the Lakers already dished young prospect Talen Horton-Tucker to Utah.
"As far as Westbrook’s trade market, I’ve heard Indiana and Utah are the two most likely destinations. I think Utah is, from what I’ve been told, more likely than Indiana. There are several permutations there with Indiana where it could be Myles Turner and Buddy Hield together or one of the two." (h/t HoopsHype)
The Lakers are in a less-than-ideal situation with both interested teams holding them for ransom to get both picks. Utah is a more natural trade partner considering they will love to get off multiple contracts of contending players for 2 Laker picks that should have high value with the age of their current stars.
No matter how you slice it, the Lakers will only get 2 players while dealing with the Pacers. They are better off getting more of Utah's competitive core, especially with THT not being available in a Laker trade to Indiana to boost the value. Buddy Hield and Myles Turner are also inconsistent players that lack playoff experience, so maybe Utah is the best option for LA.