With the trade deadline quickly approaching, the Los Angeles Lakers find themselves entwined in a number of trade rumors. Based on some reports, the team would be willing to move Kyle Kuzma if a team can offer the right piece. The most recent talk has been focused on Sacramento Kings guard Bogdan Bogdanovic, who the Lakers seem to be very interested in.
Though he is not a starter, the Kings don’t seem very keen on letting go of Bogdanovic, especially not for Kuzma in return. Sam Amick of the Atheltic recently reported that the Lakers were the ones who initiated the trade talks:
As for Bogdanovic, who is averaging a career-high 14.5 points (38.3 percent from 3) to go with 3.6 assists and three rebounds per game, a source with knowledge of his thinking says he simply “wants to win” and that he’s not ruling out the prospect of a long-term stay in Sacramento. As I tweeted the other day, the Kings have no interest in a deal centered on a Kuzma-for-Bogdanovic swap. That being said, it was revelatory that – per sources – the Lakers were the ones who came calling about Bogdanovic recently.
Before the start of the season, it looked like Kuzma was going to be an important part of the Lakers’ future, hence why he wasn’t traded away when the team acquired Anthony Davis. However, it seems like Los Angeles is more than ready to trade him for a guard. He’s had an injury-plagued season thus far and hasn’t provided the kind of impact the Lakers want from him. The fact that the Kings aren’t willing to give up Bogdanovic for Kuzma is pretty damning for the young forward.
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Kings Could Be Willing to Let Bogdanovic Enter Free Agency
Amick also mentioned in his piece that the Kings believe they still need Bogdanovic despite there being a good shot he leaves in free agency after the season:
The Kings see Bogdanovic as a key part of their playoff push, and team sources swear they’re comfortable letting his situation spill into this summer. Translation: It will take a lot to land him, but they might be more willing to listen if the postseason seems out of reach early next month.
The Kings are currently the 12th seed in the Western Conference, but thanks to down years by many other teams, they are still within reach of the eighth seed. Bogdanovic is a valuable second-unit player and the Kings don’t want to lose out on that. However, it seems strange that they wouldn’t be more open to offers. Even if the Kings somehow made the playoffs, they’re not getting anywhere near the finals. There’s a real shot Bogdanovic walks in free agency, so why not get some value for him now?
The trade deadline isn’t until February sixth, so there’s still plenty of time for things to change. Maybe the Kings will drop their asking price as the February gets closer.