Talen Horton-Tucker was viewed as a promising combo guard going into the season. He was expected to take a leap in his development and potentially become a major contributing piece on this Los Angeles Lakers team.
With that being said, there's no doubt that Talen Horton-Tucker has struggled this season. He is averaging 9.5 PPG, 3.2 RPG, and 2.5 APG this season, while only shooting 40.6% from the field and 25.0% from beyond the arc.
Despite his struggles, it seems as though the Los Angeles Lakers are trying to use Talen Horton-Tucker as a trade chip to acquire help for the roster. Dan Woike of the Los Angeles Times revealed that Talen Horton-Tucker is "on the table at the deadline", but added that there's little "appetite" from teams around the league to acquire him, and added that "one experienced league source" views him as a bad contract.
League insiders have indicated that Talen Horton-Tucker and perhaps the team’s 2027 first-round pick are on the table at the deadline. But my sources tell me the appetite for Horton-Tucker is low, with one experienced league source even calling the 21-year-old a player with a “bad contract.” The Lakers owe THT $10.3 million next season before he has a player option for $11 million in 2023-24. Attempts to try and use their assets to jar someone like Jerami Grant loose from Detroit can’t work, meaning the Lakers’ need for two-way players has to be met with lesser talent.
It remains to be seen if the Los Angeles Lakers will be able to make an upgrade to their roster at the trade deadline. Terrence Ross is reportedly a "realistic target" for the team, so perhaps he could be an option.
Talen Horton-Tucker may have had a rough year, but he still has untapped potential. He is a solid slasher and is a solid defender on the perimeter. Hopefully, we see him improve in the future, whether it is on the Los Angeles Lakers or otherwise.