Proposed Blockbuster Trade Sends Lakers a New $210 Million Superstar

Anthony Davis

Getty Anthony Davis (right) is being mentioned as a potential trade candidate for the Los Angeles Lakers.

The Los Angeles Lakers could go star hunting this offseason but the clearest path to overhauling the team’s roster would be striking a blockbuster trade involving Anthony Davis. The Ringer’s Bill Simmons believes Lakers fans should keep their eyes on 76ers All-Star center Joel Embiid if the MVP attempts to push his way out of Philadelphia.

Simmons suggested a deal centered around swapping Davis for Embiid but admitted Los Angeles would need to give up more in the trade given the Philly star is the reigning NBA MVP. From a cap standpoint, the big man swap works logistically, but it is hard to imagine the Sixers have an appetite for this kind of deal unless Embiid demands a trade.

“I just don’t see how they get somebody good without Davis being involved. The other guy I think is still a possibility is Embiid,” Simmons remarked on a May 24 episode of his podcast. “…I think if Embiid’s going to leave Philly, I think it would be for a situation like the Lakers. Like, if we did a fantasy draft now of stories that are going to pop up over the next four weeks, I’d be like, ‘Hmm, that one’s weird.’

“I would have the Joel Embiid, he doesn’t want to get traded but if he ever did…That one would be a first rounder [in the fantasy draft of offseason storylines] for me. And I don’t know if that’s enough, they have nothing else to throw in from the Davis side, the Lakers, because they basically traded everything [at the 2023 trade deadline]. My guess is everybody comes back and they operate around the fringes and then try to figure out the Kyrie [Irving] piece of this.”

Lakers Rumors: What Could LA Add to a Potential Anthony Davis for Joel Embiid Trade?

The unlikely pathway for the Lakers to have a chance at landing Embiid depends on two key factors. The star center would need to push his way out of Philly and list Los Angeles as the lone team he is willing to play for as we have seen other disgruntled players do in past offseasons.

The Lakers could technically trade two first-round picks but the wild blockbuster deal would need to be made on draft night. According to ESPN’s Bobby Marks, Los Angeles can only trade their 2023 first rounder on draft night and also have the 2029 first-round pick they could offer in a potential Davis deal.

Anthony Davis Is Eligible to Sign a Contract Extension With the Lakers Beginning on August 4

Los Angeles Lakers Offseason Guide: What's next for LA? | NBA on ESPNBobby Marks gives his offseason guide for the Los Angeles Lakers after they were swept from the Western Conference Finals in the 2023 NBA Playoffs by the Denver Nuggets. ✔️ Subscribe to ESPN+ ✔️ Get the ESPN App: ✔️ Subscribe to ESPN on YouTube: ✔️ Subscribe to NBA on ESPN on YouTube:…2023-05-23T04:57:52Z

Even if this wild trade idea is not on the table, the Lakers face a decision on Davis’ future. The star has battled multiple injuries in recent years causing Davis to miss significant time in three straight seasons. The Lakers star missed 26 games this past season and 42 contests in 2021-22.

Davis has two seasons remaining on a five-year, $189.9 million contract and is slated to have a $40.6 million salary in 2023-24. The consideration of trading Davis comes with its own complications given his close relationship with LeBron James combined with being represented by Klutch Sports.

By comparison, Embiid will begin playing on a four-year, $210 million contract extension during the 2023-24 season. Embiid has a $46.9 million salary next season and this number escalates up to $58.1 million for 2026-27.

Beyond possible trades, the Lakers also need to consider how they want to handle Davis’ future. Los Angeles are able to sign Davis to a contract extension this offseason.

“Davis is eligible to sign a three-year, $167.5 million max extension starting on Aug. 4,” Marks detailed on May 22. “Davis averaged 25 points, 13.2 rebounds, 2.2 blocks and 55% shooting from the field from Feb. 11 through the end of the regular season. Davis has an early termination option in 2023-24 and could be an unrestricted free agent next offseason.”

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