The Lakers’ front office turnover hasn’t stopped teams around the league from inquiring on Lou Williams. Speaking to reporters today, new Lakers president of basketball operations Magic Johnson said that he has already spoken to 10 general managers, per Tania Ganguli of The Los Angeles Times (Twitter link). As Bill Oram of The Orange County Register notes (Twitter links), Johnson confirmed that most of his calls have been about Williams, adding that it will take “a lot” to get him.
As we’ve heard in the last 24 hours, the Jazz are in the mix for Williams, and so are the Wizards. However, they have plenty of competition. Michael Scotto of Basketball Insiders reports (via Twitter) that the Rockets and Pelicans have also expressed interest in trading for Williams. Chris Haynes of ESPN.com adds Charlotte to the list of Williams suitors as well, tweeting that the Hornets have “aggressively” pursued the veteran guard.
With a 24-32 record, the Hornets aren’t currently in playoff position, but the team remains on the lookout for pieces to improve their 2016/17 roster, according to Sean Deveney of The Sporting News. Deveney wrote earlier today Charlotte was one of many teams to inquire on Williams, suggesting that the Hornets have been looking for a scorer off the bench and depth at point guard.
A player like Williams would appeal to the Hornets and other clubs due to both his solid on-court production and his favorable contract. Despite only playing 24.2 minutes per game off the bench for the Lakers, Williams is averaging a career-high 18.6 PPG, and has established new career bests in three-pointers per game (2.1) and 3PT% (.386) so far. The 30-year-old is also earning just $7MM this season and remains under contract for $7MM in 2017/18.
According to both Alex Kennedy of HoopsHype and ESPN’s Marc Stein (Twitter links), teams around the NBA still expect Williams to be moved this week, despite the massive restructuring that took place in the Lakers’ front office.