It’s been a long, drawn-out process which has linked New Orleans Pelicans star Anthony Davis to the Los Angeles Lakers. Obviously, the stars would need to align for a deal between the Pelicans and Lakers to happen, with the first move being his current team opening trade discussions.
Much of the topic surrounding Davis’ future in New Orleans has to do with whether he’ll sign a long-term contract extension this offseason. If he opts not to do so and makes it known that he could leave in free agency, the Pelicans likely become far more open to moving him. Rumblings have involved the idea of the 23-year-old being traded at some point in the near future, and the odds are out on where Davis will play next season.
Interestingly, it seems the popular belief is that it’ll be a three-way battle for him. Not surprisingly, his current team has a slight edge, but it’s closer than you may think.
Odds on Team Anthony Davis Starts 2019-20 Season With
*Note: Odds courtesy of Bovada and posted by Odds Shark.
- New Orleans Pelicans +160
- Los Angeles Lakers +190
- Boston Celtics +275
- New York Knicks +850
- Philadelphia 76ers +850
Although the Pelicans have a slight edge over the Lakers currently, there’s no question that Magic Johnson and company are primed to make a major push for Davis. Whether or not they can hold off a run by the Boston Celtics, or even convince New Orleans to deal their star in the first place will be a big question.
Back in December, Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry pulled no punches while addressing the rumors of a potential trade sending Davis out of town. As ESPN revealed, Gentry put his foot down and literally told everyone to move on.
“No we’re not trading him,” Gentry said to open up his media availability. “We’re not trading him under any circumstance. You can move on from that one.”
Davis is due just north of $27 million next season and has a player option for the 2020-21 season, per Spotrac. That marks a key talking point because if his plan is to opt out and head elsewhere in free agency, the Pelicans would be wise to deal him prior to that.
Potential Lakers-Anthony Davis Trade Options
While the Lakers could opt to go a variety of ways with a possible deal, they can put together some of the best packages of any team in the league, including the Celtics. Much of the trade chatter between the Lakers and Pelicans, assuming it got to that point, could relate to Kyle Kuzma.
The second-year forward has emerged as one of the team’s top scorers and a highly-valuable trade candidate. It’s likely Los Angeles will keep him off the table in discussion, but that would still leave options such as Brandon Ingram, Josh Hart, Ivica Zubac, and possibly even Lonzo Ball. Realistically, I’d expect a deal for Davis to be centered around Ingram and Hart, with the Lakers attempting to hold both Kuzma and Ball.