The Bulls and Hawks are among the teams interested in Pelicans guard Lonzo Ball, but skepticism remains that New Orleans will deal the 23-year-old ahead of the March 25 trade deadline, according to Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer.
Chicago has offered a package that features Tomas Satoransky and second-round picks, per O’Connor, but the Pelicans are hoping to acquire at least one first-round pick or a young player.
Trade discussions with the Hawks have mostly revolved around second-year wing Cam Reddish, O’Connor adds. Atlanta signed two point guards (Rajon Rondo and Kris Dunn) last offseason to a roster that already features Trae Young as a starter, but Dunn has yet to make his debut to an ankle injury and Rondo’s play has been up and down.
By offloading a guard, the Pelicans would have a clearer pathway toward playing some of their younger backcourt players, though it’s probably safe to assume the team would rather move Eric Bledsoe than Ball.
Ball is set to become a restricted free agent at season’s end. Similar to the Kyle Lowry situation with any interested teams, both the Bulls and Hawks will have enough cap space to potentially sign Ball this offseason, but New Orleans would have the ability to match any offer. The former No. 2 overall pick averaged a career-high 14.2 points and 5.6 assists in 31.7 minutes per game on the year.