Lakers’ Dilemma: No Top Free Agents Without Anthony Davis?

Top free agents may not seriously consider signing with the Lakers if the team doesn’t trade for Anthony Davis, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN said on the network’s Mock Draft Special (h/t the Showtime Forum).

“The Lakers are not a frontrunner or even really a major consideration among any of the elite free agents,” Wojnarowski said of a scenario where the team doesn’t trade for Davis.

Los Angeles plans to use the No. 4 overall pick as part of a trade package in an attempt to entice the Pelicans. That selection is among the highest-valued assets among presumed Davis contenders, as we previously detailed. Woj believes that if the Lakers are picking at that spot on draft night, the franchise will be “in trouble.”

The Lakers are expected attempt to sign Kevin Durant regardless of how long they expect the former MVP to be sidelined. Other marquee free agents that the club is expected to pursue include Kyrie Irving, Kawhi Leonard, and Jimmy Butler.

Pelicans head of basketball operations David Griffin had initially hoped to convince Davis to remain in New Orleans. The franchise has reportedly softened its stance on fulfilling Davis’ trade request and Griffin has reportedly named his terms: An All-Star player, a young player with the potential to be an All-Star, and multiple first-round picks.

The Lakers don’t have an All-Star caliber player on the roster outside of LeBron James. They have an assortment of intriguing prospects and may need to bring in a third team willing to part with a player of that caliber in order to get a deal done.

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44 thoughts on “Lakers’ Dilemma: No Top Free Agents Without Anthony Davis?

  1. Seeing how long AD can hold the Lakers hostage is a fun game I hope doesn’t end

  2. madmanTX

    The Pelicans won’t trade with the Lakers for Davis. Hasn’t that already been established? He’s going to the Knicks.

    • kenleyfornia2

      And if they want to continue to be dumb with that mindset thats their loss. Spurs had that same attitude and all it got them was an overpaid DeRozan. Could have had 2 young players and cap room but nah cant deal with the Lakers. Pelicans already denied Magics offer. Lets see how far their Lakers derangement goes

      • Eric Lord

        How good was the Lakers offer? Most of the players they were offering can’t even stay on the floor because they have injury problems. The Lakers haven’t taken any steps forward with those young players. Sorry, the Lakers young players aren’t anywhere near as good as the Lakers think they are. If the Lakers want Davis, they are going to have to get a 3rd team involved. They don’t have enough to do a deal themselves

        • Luckylefty2

          Not like they were trying to win anyways. Pelicans could of had the #4 pick plus 3 more, but demps let his ego get in the way. And that is the reason why he is in employed.

          • I give no fox

            Doesn’t change the fact that the lakers players aren’t as good as the laker fans think they are. If the picks are all that matter, then the Knicks picks are WAY better. #3, mavs picks, their picks all more valuable thank #4 and future laker late round 1sts

    • theking24

      Your forgetting that Dell Demps is gone and David griffin is here. He won’t be playin the petty game

      • thebighurt619
        thebighurt619

        Least the cities in Texas have won championships recently.

        Dodgers- buffalo bills syndrome
        Lakers- going on 9 years
        Rams/Chargers- HA. Wont be winning one any time soon.

        Well. Least y’all got the LA Kings and Galaxy I suppose.

        • kenleyfornia2

          Its not like the Mavs and Spurs titles were very recent lmao. How can you say the Chargers and Rams wont win anytime soon when they both have very good rosters. Just shows your bias. But let me guess you think the Texans and Cowboys are better

  3. halofanatic

    This is all here-say. Earlier news indicated that the Lakers are the odds on favorites for AD. Now, a report comes out that no FA have them as their top pick(s). C’mon… this was leaked by an NBA front office to get the Lakers to up their offer for AD. This is absolute nonsense. SMDH.

    • If it’s nonsense, then what top FA is coming to Lakers? I think it might be true. Butler said he’d come for a max offer, but is he worth max? Other than that, can’t see it. Outside chance at Klay or Kyrie, but I doubt it.

      • halofanatic

        They will all consider the Lakers if the Lakers can pull off the trade for Anthony Davis. I’m telling you, this rumor was completely made up by NBA front offices to block the Lakers. The Lakers are probably the most hated franchise in professional sports.

  4. Only thing Knicks have over Lakers is number 3 pick and that doesn’t compensate for the fact the Lakers have better players to offer. I think the Knicks are out. Look out for Boston. If they include Tatum, I think they are the winners. Lakers won’t have max room if they trade for AD. Assuming Lonzo and BI are part of it, Lakes have about $26M for FA.

    • Matt Kimball

      Rich Paul said in an SI article that AD wouldn’t stay in Boston:
      “They can trade for him, but it’ll be for one year. I mean: If the Celtics traded for Anthony Davis, we would go there and we would abide by our contractual [obligations] and we would go into free agency in 2020.”

  5. Demps may be a boob, but he was right to not engage the Lakers with Magic’s sophomoric overtures. He owed it to the Pels to sell AD in a market of all interested teams. Not be limited to a single team because AD gave decided he could give them an exclusive. It would have taken a very savvy deal maker on the Laker side to have gotten the Pels to do a deal with them ahead of the market. The Lakers had Magic.

    But it’s also the past. It was business, nothing personal. Griffin now owes it to the Pels to try and get the Lakers’ re-engaged along with other teams. If Pels won’t sell to the Lakers on “principle” then they’re bad business people (whether its Griffin or the owner). Likewise, if the Lakers decide not to re-engage or low ball the Pels because they’re mad, then they’re even worse business people. Both family owned businesses, that can afford to be bad as their are no shareholders to answer to.

  6. jordanrulestheworld

    Nobody in the running for top free agents. Watch all these guys stay with their current clubs

  7. Yep it is

    They want a All Star picks and a possible All Star? Ask San Antonio how that worked for them. No top tier free agent is going to the Lakers. Don’t call Jimmy [Cancer] Butler a “ Top tier”. This off season now with KD hurt should be awesome. All those who had the answers for the final test has had the carpet pulled out from them.

  8. hansel2525

    Why do people think Tatum is so great? He was invisible in the playoffs while getting whipped by the Bucks.

    • Chucktoad1

      He’s only 21 years old and has shown flashes. I wouldn’t say he’s great yet but he has a lot of upside if he can get over his Kobeitus.

    • Curtisrowe

      Because of his skill set obviously. You’d be hard pressed to find anyone that knows hoops that don’t see him being a 20 point a game scorer for 10 years. I don’t see him as a superstar though.

  9. hoosierhysteria

    When will Fakers and fans stop believing that they have a divine right to all good players. Let’s review: they have missed the playoffs 6 years in a row. They have a GM that no one trusts and a proven liar on videotape. They have a hands off owner that listens to rambis wife. They have an environment so toxic that magic quit. Free agents will go there only because they have no alternatives or the money is stupid….or you want your son to go to high school in LA. Suffer fools!

    • Funny. Don’t see any post here that acts like Lakers have a divine right to any player?

    • kenleyfornia2

      They are entitled to use their cap room to attempt to sign a player. Such a concept

    • Dodgethis

      I’m no laker fan, but magic doesn’t understand how business works and couldn’t handle an opinion of himself that wasn’t amazing. He was super childish. “They want to criticize me? Peace im out!” It’s called having a job.

      • Matt Kimball

        Magic has a billion dollars that says he understands business. He just shouldn’t coach or be in the Laker front office.

  10. nentwigs

    Timberwolves to acquire Anthony Davis and name “Pelicans” from New Orleans for future considerations?

    Davis To be flipped to LA for the name Lakers?

    Minnesota acquires the name “Jazz” from Utah for future considerations?

    The name “Jazz” is flipped to New Orleans by Minnesota in fulfillment of future considerations?

    The names “Timberwolves” and “Pelicans” are sent to Utah by Minnesota in fulfillment of future considerations.

  11. washington_bonercats

    I think everyone is understating how NO feels about have 1 and 4. For 1 year of AD, which everyone knows he’d leave anyway, how does 4, Ingram, Kuzma, Hart, and 2-3 more first rounders plus however many 2nd rounders they want not get a deal done. Who’s gonna give more?

      • SuperSinker

        The Lakers have missed the playoffs for 6 straight years lol they have as much to lose as NOLA if they can’t get something done

      • tharrie0820

        Lakers aren’t the only team trying to obtain AD. NO has all the leverage

      • I give no fox

        Yea, tell that to lebron James. I’m sure he will be ok with the lakers playing hard ball. Waste another of his last years in mediocrity….hahaha, Nola still has plenty of leverage

  12. Simple Fan

    I wonder if AD has a kind of fond thing about being the only one left in a ghost town that is the East if he plays for either Pels or Knicks this year when Kyrie and Kemba go to the Clippers and Lakers, respectively. I’d bet he’d love playing in New York as a Knickerbocker like that.

    And of course there’s the younger Giannis over there, too, as well as budding young Net Russell, as well as a cast of star players (Randle, Middleton, Vucevic) who come to mind.

    Ultimately, I think there’s no shame in competing in the East!

      • Simple Fan

        I mean, those guys, & etc. other stars in the East. But far fewer superstars than the West has and I don’t have my “filthy” hands on anyone. Besides that my comment was a compliment to Middlton so your reply was stupid

        • Indeed it was, also K-Mid has had a very down & disappointing year, hopefully Bucks pass on him or get rid of him for someone better. Anyone paying more than 15-20MM/year for him is getting fleeced in a bad way!

    • I give no fox

      One, the pelicans play in the west. Two, you forgot about the sixers stars Embiid/Simmons/butler/Harris. The east is quite competitive at the top, but much easier to make the playoffs. The west is balanced, with 10 teams capable of making the playoffs, and 8 of them capable of being anywhere from 3-8 seed…assuming the rockets and warriors maintain the top two spots

  13. jump shot

    Nobody’s running to the Knicks (or Lakers), for similar reasons. Everyone on this site has shown to have higher basketball IQ’s than nba executives, so they obviously know what those similar reasons are.

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