Lakers Expected to Show Interest in Former Celtics Star Guard: Report

kemba walker

Getty Kemba Walker with Jaylen Brown.

It’s early in the offseason for the Los Angeles Lakers but that hasn’t stopped them from already getting linked to a number of possibly available players. In a perfect world, the team would like to add a third superstar to pair with Anthony Davis and LeBron James. It will be difficult for Los Angeles to add that third star but not impossible.

Some of the bigger names like Damian Lillard or Bradley Beal aren’t likely in the Lakers’ future but Kemba Walker is a name to keep an eye on. The four-time All-Star was recently traded from the Boston Celtics to the Oklahoma City Thunder. Considering his new team has embraced a youth movement, it’s hard to imagine he’s still there when the season starts.

ESPN’s Zach Lowe believes that the Lakers will be among the teams looking into a Walker acquisition.

“I think both the L.A. teams are going to be sniffing around Kemba Walker,” Lowe said on The Lowe Post podcast. “I think that’s the market. Now, I don’t know if you can get up to the money, I don’t know if they have whatever Oklahoma City wants, but that’s the level that I think they can target.”

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Lakers Have Shown Interest in Walker Previously

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When Walker is healthy, he’s one of the better scorers in the NBA. The Lakers need a player outside of LeBron and Davis who can create his own offense. Walker would certainly be the team’s third-best scoring option. It’s no surprise that the Lakers are interested in him.

Last year, Walker admitted to the New York Times that Los Angeles “heavily pursued” him when he was a free agent in 2019. He was coming off of his best season then and hasn’t reached those heights since. During his two years in Boston, Walker only averaged 19.9 points a game after averaging 25.6 points a game during his last season with the Charlotte Hornets. He also missed two games during the Celtics’ recent playoff run. He’d be a strong fit with the Lakers but he does have some red flags.

What Would It Take in a Trade to Land Walker?

The biggest thing the Lakers need is a knockdown 3-point shooter. Walker has only hit 36% of his 3-point attempts in his career so he’s not elite in that category. Knowing that, Los Angeles shouldn’t sell the farm to acquire him. A package surrounding Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and this year’s first-round pick could be enough to make it happen.

Moving on from Kuzma seems like a wise move at this point. He’d be better off playing for a younger team where he can start and have more of a role. It’s clear that he’s not working out in Los Angeles anymore. The Lakers will be apprehensive to move on from Caldwell-Pope. He plays great defense and is one of their best 3-point shooters. However, he’s really inconsistent on offense so he can’t be relied on. At the very least, Walker would give the Lakers 19 points a game. The team never knows what they’re going to get from Caldwell-Pope.

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