Shortly after the February 9 trade deadline passed, the Los Angeles Lakers were rumored to hold interest in potentially reuniting with veteran wing Danny Green.
However, after becoming a free agent upon being bought out by the Houston Rockets, Green opted against signing with the Lakers in order to ink a deal February 15 with the Cleveland Cavaliers. On the February 19 episode of the “Inside the Green Room” podcast, the three-time NBA champion shared his reasoning for not joining the purple and gold.
“I don’t think they had the opportunity, or the same opportunity, or the same minutes,” he said. “With all the wings they brought in, all the people they brought in, to be able to say, ‘Oh, you have a good opportunity to be on the floor, and we’re for sure gonna make the playoffs.’ So, it was very up in their air, and it’s a very urgent time for them. They have to win now. They have a lot of pressure in doing that in a short amount of time, and that relies on a lot of LeBron’s help and Anthony Davis’ help in the last 20 to 30 games. And for me, that was a big risk.”
Green was part of the Lakers roster that won a championship in 2020, but now, he will be hoping to help the Cavaliers, who are in fourth place in the Eastern Conference, make a push for a deep playoff run.
LeBron James Is Willing to Push His Teammates
Shortly after the All-Star festivities had ended on February 19, LeBron James sat in front of the media for his postgame press conference and detailed the importance of the Lakers’ remaining 23 games of the current season.
“It’s 23 of the most important games of my career for a regular season. … It’s the type of mindset that I have, and I hope the guys will have, coming back off the break,” James said. “I hope I can figure out a way to just make sure that I’m available on the floor every single night for these 23 games to give us a chance. … Give our group a chance to be able to compete every night and give ourselves a chance to win every night so we can give ourselves a chance to get into the postseason.”
The Lakers, who are in 13th place in the Western Conference and two games out of a shot to make the play-in tournament, still boast an open roster spot, so it will be interesting to see whether general manager Rob Pelinka looks to add another veteran to the team in the hopes of giving LeBron the best chance of making the playoffs.
Carmelo Anthony Floated as Potential Free Agent Addition
According to Sports Illustrated’s Ben Stinar, the Lakers should consider reuniting with Carmelo Anthony for the remainder of the current season, as he could provide much-needed frontcourt depth and a reliable shooting stroke.
“With Russell and Beasley, they will be a much better shooting team, but adding Anthony would still help them off the bench. Since the former Syracuse star spent last season with the Lakers, joining the team in the middle of the season would likely be a seamless transition. … The instant scoring that Anthony can provide would make him an excellent fit, and he would only be signing a minimum contract which means there would be no long-term risk,” Stinar wrote in a story published February 18.
Anthony hasn’t played in the NBA since his contract with the Lakers expired at the end of last season, but he might still be able to add value to a contending team at the back end of its rotation.