The Los Angeles Lakers didn’t make any moves this offseason. They did trade for Patrick Beverley, but this doesn’t solve the bigger issues on the basketball court. Russell Westbrook has been mentioned in pretty much every trade rumor this offseason, but Rob Pelinka didn’t do much to trade him. In fact, the Lakers didn’t want to give up on their future first-round picks just to get rid of Westbrook. It was an unrealistic demand and Russ will enter the 2022-23 season as a Laker. So, the Lakers were really quiet this offseason. What about the next one? Will they make bigger moves? According to an NBA insider, the Lakers can go after a former No.1 pick.
The Lakers have a few great reasons to go after the former No.1 pick
Sam Amick and Jovan Buha bet on Andrew Wiggins from the Golden State Warriors. He will be one of the better free agents on the market next offseason and Pelinka should try his chances with the Warriors guard.
“As it stands, the Lakers only have James ($46.9 million), Davis ($40.6 million) and rookie Max Christie ($1.7 million) under contract for the 2023-24 campaign,” Amick and Buha wrote on September 16. “(Jones also has a player option worth $2.6 million.) With the salary cap projected to be $134 million, Los Angeles could create upwards of $30 million to $35 million or so in cap space. If their widely known interest in Brooklyn’s Kyrie Irving isn’t satisfied via trade by then, Irving could reunite with James the easy way when he’s an unrestricted free agent. Other notable free agents could include Khris Middleton (player option), Fred VanVleet (player option), Andrew Wiggins, Tyler Herro (restricted) and Jordan Poole (restricted).”
The Cleveland Cavaliers selected Wiggins with their NO.1 pick in the 2014 NBA Draft. He didn’t make a huge impact right away, but he was brilliant with the Warriors. The team got the best of his skills and Wiggins helped them win a championship. So, yes, the Warriors guard is an exciting option for the purple and gold.
When it comes to Westbrook, he is still a mystery for the front office. Darvin Ham likes his potential on the basketball court. The one-time MVP had great performance in the preseason opener against the Sacramento Kings. Maybe the Lakers will keep him on their roster after all. Westbrook is a star and the Lakers treat him as such.