The Lakers and Suns are among the teams interested in soon-to-be free agent Luol Deng, sources tell Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio. There were conflicting reports in February about Deng as an offseason target of the Lakers, but the Suns appear to be a newcomer to his list of suitors. Both teams will have plenty of cap flexibility this summer for the Herb Rudoy client, who’s rumored to be eyeing salaries of more than $13.5MM.
Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports wrote shortly before the trade deadline that there was increasing doubt the Lakers would make a run at Deng in the summer. Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times countered soon afterward with a report that the Lakers are high on Deng, but that they don’t want to overpay him, with the franchise’s focus primarily on 2015’s free agent class. Around the same time, Mitch Lawrence of the New York Daily News put the Lakers on a list of teams likely to pursue Deng in free agency that also identified the Mavs, Celtics, Magic and Bobcats.
Deng has appeared unlikely to re-sign with the Cavs almost since he arrived from the Bulls in a January trade. The Cavs explored flipping him at the trade deadline, but other teams were wary of taking him on without an assurance he would re-sign. Deng, who turns 29 on Wednesday, is No. 8 on the Hoops Rumors 2014 Free Agent Power Rankings.