The season from hell looks to be finally coming to an end for the Los Angeles Lakers. There are only four games left for the team to get back into the play-in tournament but three of them come against playoff teams. Things aren’t looking good for their chances but it might be for the best. Even if the Lakers made the play-in tournament, there’s no reason to believe that they’d be able to turn things around.
LeBron James may need to do some soul searching this offseason. He has a chance to win the scoring title this season and the Lakers are still bad. He’s 37-years-old and his body isn’t holding up like it used to. He’s only got so many years left to be an impact player on a title contender. Barring a miracle, the Lakers don’t have the means to totally fix all of their issues this offseason.
Fox Sports’ Kevin Wildes believes that LeBron should look to the other Los Angeles team if he hopes to win another title before he retires.
“The Lakers roster is not a season away, and I think Russ’ contract is an albatross and you’re not going to be able to just trade Russ out for three young, defensive players on the cheap. That’s just not going to happen,” Wildes said on First Things First. “So I think the answer to the Lakers roster is that LeBron leaves totally. He just says, ‘you know what, this is not the answer for me, I need to go.’
“But there’s two teams in L.A., and I think LeBron should initiate, or at least start considering a trade to the Clippers for either Paul George or Kawhi [Leonard]. The roster is better, the Clippers are going to make the playoffs, even though we haven’t seen Kawhi.”
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Would a LeBron Trade to Clippers Make Sense?
Paul George is a very good player and has been an MVP candidate before. However, the Lakers should only be interested in Kawhi Leonard if they’re going to trade LeBron to a team they share a building with. The Clippers’ new stadium isn’t going to be ready until at least 2024 so the Lakers would have two seasons of watching LeBron have big games at Crypto.com Arena. That’s not ideal.
Leonard would make the trade worthwhile because he’s one of the best players in the world when healthy. Pairing him with Anthony Davis would give the Lakers a duo that can impact both sides of the court at an elite level. Plus, Leonard is seven years younger than LeBron. Now, the Clippers might not even be interested in making this deal. They could be interested in swapping LeBron for George but it’s hard to imagine that would be appealing to the Lakers unless LeBron left them no choice.
LeBron Doesn’t Want to Play for Clippers
Going to the Clippers could make a bit of sense for LeBron. He’d get to play with Ty Lue, who coached him to a championship with the Cleveland Cavaliers. He also wouldn’t have to move his family and there’s no doubt they have the better team right now. However, it’s never going to happen, per ESPN’s Zach Lowe.
“I actually have floated this to some people who might know, would LeBron ever go to the Clippers?” Lowe said on The Lowe Post podcast last month. “And the answer was, ‘hard no, hard no.’”
Obviously, things can always change and the Lakers have only gotten worse in the last month. That said, it sounds like he would look elsewhere if he decided to pursue a trade.