Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka hopes to not only retain Anthony Davis for the long haul but also pair him with a young superstar in those future years, he told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski on a recent podcast (hat tip to Donny McHenry of LakersOutsiders.com). Davis is expected to re-sign — at least in the short term — with the Lakers, even if he declines his $28.75MM player option.
“We hope that we can have another championship run next year, for sure, and we’re going to work hard to try to keep the pieces around LeBron (James) and AD, build pieces around LeBron and AD to do that,” Pelinka said. “But also, with the future, again, if you study our cap (space) we have the flexibility to say, “Can we add another really, really talented young player to run it out with AD if he chooses to stay as a free agent for five, six, seven, eight years?””
We have more from around the Western Conference:
- The Jazz need to re-sign free agent Jordan Clarkson and use their mid-level exception on a wing player that can defend quicker players, Sarah Todd of the Deseret News opines. Utah owns Clarkson’s Bird rights and needs his offensive punch, notes Todd, who also details why it would be a bad idea to trade for the Sixers’ Al Horford.
- Garrett Temple, Courtney Lee and D.J. Augustin are some of the free agents the Pelicans might consider signing, according to William Guillory of The Athletic. Any of them could take a leadership and mentoring role as well as helping off the bench. Guillory also examines the glut of guards on the roster and predicts the players that will be lopped off.
- The Mavericks’ draft picks this year could be their most valuable selections over the next five years, Callie Caplan of the Dallas Morning News writes. Dallas owns the No. 18 overall pick as well as the first pick of the second round (No. 31), courtesy of a 2016 three-team deal that involved the Warriors. The Mavericks don’t have first-rounders in two of the three ensuing drafts due to the Kristaps Porzingis trade with the Knicks.