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Two Mega Trades The Lakers Can Do To Land Ben Simmons And Jerami Grant

Two Mega Trades The Lakers Can Do To Land Ben Simmons And Jerami Grant

The Los Angeles Lakers are not the team everybody expected them to be. LeBron James is still one of the top-5 players in the league, but he is almost 37 and cannot be relied upon to play every game at his usual elite level. James also has a ton of mileage on his body and needs the maximum amount of help around him at this stage of the season. Unfortunately for him and the Laker organization, the help has not been there consistently.

Anthony Davis is still showing signs of being injury-prone and is only averaging 24.0 PPG this year on 52.3% from the field and a putrid 19.2% from three. The big man is shooting the worst percentage of his career from three since he started taking more than 1.0 3-pointer per game. Besides his inconsistent shooting and all-around lack of dominance, Davis has not looked like the player he used to be in 2020. Most importantly, Russell Westbrook has been a disaster.

The 9-time All-Star and future Hall of Famer is having an inconsistent season as the floor general of the franchise. The point guard’s statistics look great on paper, 19.5 PPG, 7.7 RPG, and 8.4 APG. But his numbers have not been the issue, it is his inefficiency. Russ is shooting 45.1% from the field, 32.4%, and 67.6% from the free-throw line. His outside shooting and free-throw shooting have been below-average when compared to other superstar point guards, and he is not exactly the best fit with LeBron James and Anthony Davis.

Head coach Frank Vogel has also been in hot water lately, for failing to lead the team better on the floor. While it is harsh to blame the coach, he certainly deserves some blame for a disappointing 15-13 start to the year. Not to mention, there are a ton of doubts about the Lakers’ role players because they are very old and have not made up for the inconsistent play from their superstar trio.

Luckily, the Lakers have a way to acquire two star players to fix all of their problems on both ends of the floor. By striking deals with the Detroit Pistons and Philadelphia 76ers, Los Angeles can perform two mega-trades to deliver them the coveted NBA championship at the end of the season.

Los Angeles Part Ways With Horton-Tucker, Acquire A Star Forward

Jerami Grant Lakers Trade Package

Detroit Pistons Receive: Talen Horton-Tucker, Kendrick Nunn, Rajon Rondo, 2027 First-Round Pick

Los Angeles Lakers Receive: Jerami Grant

The Los Angeles Lakers franchise is a big fan of Talen Horton-Tucker because the 21-year-old has shown confidence on the court and is never afraid of the moment. A 6’4” shooting guard, Horton-Tucker has improved his play on both ends of the floor over the past few years. He is currently averaging 11.3 PPG and 4.5 RPG this year, solid numbers considering he has had limited opportunities in his 15 games played after injury. After Carmelo Anthony, Horton-Tucker has been the most consistent role player on the team.

Los Angeles did not want to give up Horton-Tucker last year for former NBA champion Kyle Lowry, and that did not help the team in the playoffs. After getting bounced in the first round last year, the Lakers were expected to contend with Russell Westbrook on the squad. For many Lakers fans, keeping Talen Horton-Tucker seemed like the right move as a result. Clearly, that has not been the case because Westbrook has not played well while Kyle Lowry is bringing championship intangibles to the Miami Heat.

If the Lakers have Lowry on the squad, they are likely a much better team on both ends of the floor. The former Raptors star has proven he can win at the highest level, something the Lakers needed during their downturn. But the time for acquiring Lowry is long-gone, and they have a chance to target a new star player in Jerami Grant.

The two-way swingman surprised everyone last year when he averaged a career-high 22.3 PPG, and showed glimpses of being on the All-Star Team. This year, Grant is once again at his best by putting up 20.1 PPG 4.8 RPG while playing his usual above-average defense. For a Lakers squad that cannot defend their own shadow, Grant would be a much-needed addition. The swingman can defend 4 positions well, score in isolation, and is a perfect fast-break partner for LeBron James. Losing Horton-Tucker will hurt, but the Lakers need to take advantage of a 36-year-old LeBron James in his final years to contend right now.

A Blockbuster Deal To Shake Up The NBA Once Again

Ben Simmons Lakers Trade Package

Philadelphia 76ers Receive: Russell Westbrook, 2026 First Round Pick, 2025 Second Round

Los Angeles Lakers Receive: Ben Simmons, Danny Green

The Lakers need to acquire Ben Simmons at all costs because the 3-time All-Star is immediately available. Even if he cannot shoot and probably has a worse jumper than Russell Westbrook, he is certainly a better player. The Australian is bigger (6’11”), longer, and a much better defender after finishing runner-up for the Defensive Player of the Year. Simmons also averaged 14.3 PPG, 7.2 RPG, and 6.9 APG last year for the #1 seeded Philadelphia 76ers.

Simmons will solve all of the Lakers’ defensive issues as a massive point guard with an incredible impact on that end. The Australian can block shots, steal the ball, stay with on-ball stars, and play spectacular team defense. Most importantly, Simmons has a higher basketball IQ than Russell Westbrook. There is no doubt that Westbrook is a better scorer and shooter, but the point guard cannot handle the ball efficiently as Simmons can.

Ben Simmons will also begin to reach his potential as LeBron James Lite because he has the size and floor vision of a young King. While Ben is a different player who focuses on defending and rebounding instead of scoring, he is the perfect player to learn from LeBron. For the sake of the Lakers’ current championship run and their future, Simmons must be acquired at the expense of Russell Westbrook and future picks.

The Purple and Gold would do this deal in a heartbeat, but the only issue in their way is convincing Philadelphia to accept Russell Westbrook in return. Simmons is only 25 years old and has an incredibly high ceiling, so acquiring a 33-year-old point guard in return is not exactly the best deal on the market. But the 76ers seem desperate at this stage, especially with stars Bradley Beal and Damian Lillard dedicating themselves to Washington and Portland respectively.

But if the Lakers can convince an opposing GM to accept a deal, as they have done in the past, they are setting themselves up for now and the future. Simmons will be hungry to prove himself as one of the best players in the league after this offseason’s fiasco, and will also be a long-term star for the Lakers alongside Anthony Davis.

Lakers New Starting Lineup With New Acquisitions

Lakers New Starting Lineup With New Acquisitions

With Grant and Simmons on the roster, the Lakers look horrifying on defense. Simmons is one of the best defensive players in the NBA at 6’11”, and Jerami Grant is 6’8” with a long wingspan. Joining them is a physically imposing LeBron James and also a dominant interior defender in Anthony Davis. These 4 guys will have no problem defending any opponent during the regular season and playoffs, especially when Frank Vogel is coaching them.

The Lakers will also be a force on offense with LeBron James and Ben Simmons sharing playmaking duties. While Simmons needs the ball to be his All-Star self like Russell Westbrook does, he is a smarter player who will adjust to his strengths. Ben is unstoppable on the fast-break and tends to make others around him better by being unselfish. Grant is also a perfect starter for championship teams because he plays hard and does not need the ball to be effective.

Rounding out the lineup is Malik Monk, a 23-year-old shooting guard with a ton of energy and explosiveness. Monk is only averaging 9.7 PPG this season but has had some big performances in 2021 as a shooter and rim-runner. Monk will also improve on the Lakers with Simmons and James creating shots for him and teaching him to be a better all-around player. With Dwight Howard and Carmelo Anthony coming off the bench, the Lakers will be a solid team to play against as they improve on both ends of the floor with these mega-trades.

Los Angeles Lakers Win It All With These Trades

It will take a ton of negotiating and risk for the Lakers to pull off two deals of this magnitude. Simmons is available on the trade market, but the Lakers need to act fast to prevent him from going to another team. While it may seem like a panic move to trade Russell Westbrook 28 games into the season, it must be done for a team with a closing title window. LeBron James is not getting younger, and might only have 2 more seasons left at a star level. While The King is considered an athlete that is beyond human, father time has kicked in and will only continue going forward. James needs fresh blood around him, instead of a former All-Star that is aging without hope for changing his style of play. For a tea that wants to win now, the Lakers must act fast.

When Los Angeles gave up Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, and Josh Hart for Anthony Davis; they sacrificed their future for a current superstar. That worked out as Davis helped Los Angeles win it all in 2020, and the big man will be part of their future going forward. Similarly, the Lakers must give up future assets (Talen Horton-Tucker, Kendrick Nunn, future picks) and their starting point guard (Russell Westbrook) for two star players that will lead the Lakers to the NBA Finals.

Not to mention, the Lakers have a great opportunity to acquire two former All-Star players that can come in and contribute immediately pending buyouts from their current teams. Whether John Wall or Kevin Love becomes available remains to be seen, but Los Angeles can be in a great spot if they keep their eyes fixed on the buyout market.

With two new defensive stars on the roster, Los Angeles usurps the Suns, Jazz, and Nuggets as the most well-rounded team in the West. The league is wide open right now and the Lakers need to shake up the conference with two blockbuster deals to get them in the Finals and take advantage of LeBron’s final years as a superstar player. 


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