Lonzo Ball Trade Talk: Best 3-Team Lakers Deals for Anthony Davis

Lonzo Ball

Getty Los Angeles Lakers guard Lonzo Ball

The chatter surrounding a potential Anthony Davis trade to the Los Angeles Lakers took somewhat of a strange turn just hours after the initial report. While ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski revealed that the New Orleans Pelicans star had requested a trade out of town, the Lakers grabbed the bulk of the immediate attention.

After all, Magic Johnson and company have made it known they’re seeking a second star to pair with LeBron James, and Davis has remained the primary focus. Now that the Pelicans seem likely to deal the All-Star forward, a very realistic outcome could be for the Lakers to make a deal happen.

Shortly after the trade report came to light, Brad Turner of the Los Angeles Times reported a trade package from the Lakers would need to “start” with Lonzo Ball, Kyle Kuzma, Ivica Zubac and a first-round pick. Whether or not that’s a realistic asking price that the Lakers would consider is unknown, but it seems Ball’s side is pushing for him to land elsewhere if he’s included in a deal.

As The Athletic’s Shams Charania cited Monday evening, Ball’s camp apparently wants the second-year guard to go to a team who doesn’t have an established point guard.

Although this may not wind up even having an impact on the talks, it’s interesting to look at potential three-team deals involving the Lakers and Pelicans. Fortunately, there are plenty of point guard-needy teams if the two sides agree to look into this option, so let’s break down a few of them.

*Note: All trades created with ESPN’s NBA Trade Machine.


Lonzo Ball Heads to Suns While Pelicans Add Josh Jackson

ESPN NBA Trade Machine

*Pelicans add 2019 first-round pick from Lakers

To be clear, I’m basing these off the original trade rumor that came out, which was listed above. The final potential deal may look nothing like this in terms of what the Lakers could give up for Davis. Although it’s apparent the Pelicans want Ball in the trade, adding a player in Josh Jackson who’s flashed upside is nothing to turn your nose up at.

Beyond that, the Phoenix Suns are in desperate need of a point guard right now, and pairing Ball up with Devin Booker and DeAndre Ayton would be a huge move. Even beyond that, it would keep the team’s young core happy and put them on the path to building a playoff team. This deal makes a decent amount of sense across the board, and the Lakers add some depth in the form of shooting guard Ian Clark.


Dallas Mavericks Include Dennis Smith Jr. In Anthony Davis Deal

ESPN NBA Trade Machine

*Pelicans add 2019 first-round pick from Lakers

If the Pelicans can’t get Ball (they technically could) picking up an explosive young guard in Dennis Smith Jr. is a strong addition. He’d complement Kuzma and Zubac fairly well and would be a centerpiece, along with Kuzma, in the team’s rebuild. The Dallas Mavericks are looking to move Wesley Matthews’ contract, and he’d be a fine addition for the remainder of the season in New Orleans.

As for the Mavericks outlook in this trade, they’d obviously be thrilled to land Ball, as he’s a plug-and-play option next to Luka Doncic and Harrison Barnes. While things may not have worked out with Smith, Ball could thrive as a pass-first point guard next to a few solid scorers, so Mark Cuban would surely have no problem jumping in here.


Orlando Magic Address Point Guard Need With Lonzo Ball

ESPN NBA Trade Machine

*Pelicans add 2019 first-round pick from Lakers and second-rounder from Magic

The Orlando Magic need to address their point guard situation, and while they likely don’t want to part with Jonathan Isaac, I think an exception would be made here. New Orleans could also walk away happy from this deal with multiple young and inexpensive players who have a tremendous amount of upside.

While I think Isaac is a talented player, there’s a chance Orlando would have to toss in a second-round pick to sweeten their portion of the offer. He’s simply less proven than Jackson and Smith in the other two deals, so giving the Pelicans another piece in the deal would make sense for the overall outlook.

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