LA Lakers’ Best Target for Trade and Free Agencies After Kyrie Irving Picks Up Online Options | Bleacher report

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    The NBA offseason is less than two weeks old, and we’ve already witnessed the birth and (probably) death of a rumor of “Kyrie Irving to the Los Angeles Lakers.”

    On the day of the draft, ESPNs Adrian Wojnarowski and The Athletic’s Shams Charania both reported on Irving’s potential departure from the Brooklyn Nets. Wojnarowski even listed Irving’s favorite sign-and-trade destinations, with the Lakers among them.

    Four days later, Irving apparently made a face-off and announced his intention to buy a $ 36.5 million player option to stay in Brooklyn for 2022-23.

    Shams Charania @ShamsCharania

    Kyrie Irving: “Ordinary people keep the world going, but those who dare to be different lead us into tomorrow. I have decided to sign up. See you in the fall. A11jevn. »

    Of course, being on an expiring contract and not part of a sign-and-trade (which would “hard hood“his new team) may actually make it easier to move Kyrie, but Wojnarowski noted a largely uninterested market on Monday.

    Adrian Wojnarowski @wojespn

    ESPN Sources: Outside the Lakers, there are currently no known teams planning the hunt for sign-and-trades for Nets G Kyrie Irving. No sign-and-trade can be formally discussed until after 1 p.m. 18.00 Thursday. Brooklyn is not expected to be interested in available Lakers packages.

    In the crazy world of the NBA offseason, it is likely to declare something impossible, but let’s assume for the time being that Irving will not be reunited with LeBron James.

    That means LA needs to look at some other options to shake it up (running it back after missing the playoffs in 2022 feels like a terrible idea).

    It will have access to the taxpayer’s intermediate level exemption, which has a starting salary of $ 6.4 million. And in a summer with very little caps space availableit can actually go a long way.

    The Lakers should probably be open to replacing anyone not named LeBron or Anthony Davis, too.

    What goals are actually achievable? And what can the Lakers do to get back to the game as early as 2022-23? Scroll down to find out.

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    Yes, a shakeup is probably necessary for the Lakers, but they can do it through trade. And one of the few bright spots from last season was the floor spacer Malik Monk.

    Without access to his bird rights (because he’s only been a Laker for a year), LA would probably have to use the taxpayers’ mid-level exemption to sign him, which Monk is open to.

    “They may not be able to pay me as much as I would like,” Monk told The Athletics’ Jovan Buha. “But I could have been here and been much more comfortable as a Laker than going to any other team (that would pay me) $ 5 million more.”

    Last season, Monk averaged 13.8 points and 2.3 threes while shooting 39.1 percent from deep. And that floor spacing proved itself in more than just the conventional box.

    When Monk shared the floor with LeBron, the Lakers were minus 0.1 points per 100 possessions. It does not sound good until you realize that they were minus 4.3 when LeBron played without Monk.

    There may be bigger names willing to play for $ 6.4 million in LA, but it can certainly do worse than bring Monk back.

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    The Charlotte Hornets are a team that reportedly had a “genuine” interest in Russell Westbrook, according to The Ringers’ Kevin O’Connor.

    Pairing him with LaMelo Ball and taking assets from the young All-Star seems like a bad idea, so maybe the goal is to get sweeteners from the Lakers to take Westbrook out of their hands. Maybe Hayward’s contract ($ 61.6 million over the next two seasons) is heavy enough to justify taking on a year with Russ with no choice.

    Whatever the motivation, if it is legitimate, the Lakers should pursue it.

    Hayward has had a terrible time staying on the floor for the past three years (averaging just 48.3 appearances per season), but his game would actually fit quite well with LeBrons.

    Over the same distance, he has hit 39.6 percent of his three-point attempts. That alone should be a boost for James’ drive-and-kick game, but Hayward has a point ahead of him as well.

    This means that he can run the attack from the wing when LeBron is out of the floor or act as a secondary creator of attack defense that the superstar already has in rotation.

    The lack of durability and an extra year on the contract are valid concerns, but it is difficult to see how Hayward would fit as badly on this team as Westbrook was in 2021-22.

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    Almost every team in the NBA this offseason will be looking for versatile, interchangeable wings, and the Lakers should not apologize for that match.

    And while there may be some older free agents with bigger names willing to go to this historic franchise for a mid-level taxpayer exemption that may feel like a discount to them, LA should expand its search this offseason.

    The Lakers have made “the burden on their former best veterans” before. It’s time to try something new, and Hayward’s teammate in Charlotte, Cody Martin, would be a good option, and he may not even cost the whole exception.

    He checks many of the same boxes Hayward wanted (but perhaps on a smaller scale), and there are fewer concerns about his health.

    He logged only 26.3 minutes per game, but his adjusted numbers for pace and playing time illustrate the point above: 10.5 points, 3.5 assists, 1.7 steals and 1.2 threes per 75 possessions, with a 38 , 4 three-point percent.

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    If the Lakers are able to find a taker for Russell Westbrook, they will be in the market for another point guard (or at least a point guard player), although LeBron will continue to act as the primary playmaker.

    Some of his most successful lineups have included guards who could function outside the ball and gain attention as shooters outside, such as Mario Chalmers, Kyrie Irving and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope.

    Bruce Brown may be more difficult than Martin due to interest from other teams, but he would fill that role well on the taxpayers’ mid-level exceptions.

    Although he has often served as a rim-runner the past couple of seasons with the Brooklyn Nets, Brown began his career as a guard for the Detroit Pistons. And along the winding road, he has developed a wide range of skills that make him one of the game’s most unique players.

    In his second season, he averaged 5.2 assists per 75 possessions. The next year he went for 8.7 returns per 75 possessions, and in 2021-22 he shot a career-high 40.4 percent from three.

    If Brown could put it all together, he would be an ideal off-guard to play with one of the best strikers of all time.

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    The Los Angeles Lakers have been reluctant to add sweeteners to trades to release Russell Westbrook, but the Indiana Pacers may be able to support them from that stance.

    Per Marc Stein, LA is said to have offered Indiana a package that included Westbrook, the Horton-Tucker Speech and a draft by Malcolm Brogdon, and the Pacers refused.

    Given his lack of durability (he has only managed 48.7 appearances per season in the last three years), it may seem unwise to go much further than that. However, the Lakers should not abandon this idea.

    He is a career of 37.6 percent three-point shooter who ranks among the top 20 of all time in free throw percentage. And since joining the Pacers, he has averaged 6.3 assists.

    This combination of shooting and playing (not to mention his 6’5 “frame and multi-position defense) would make him a major secondary creator and catch-and-shoot threat with LeBron.