Failed Trade Would Have Landed Lakers Sharpshooter & Former Lottery Pick: Report

Rob Pelinka

Getty Lakers GM Rob Pelinka is headed towards a pivotal offseason.

The Los Angeles Lakers made no moves at the trade deadline. However, they tried to improve the roster.

According to Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report, the Lakers were close to acquiring Alec Burks and Cam Reddish from the New York Knicks, but talks fell short with the Knicks’ desire to receive more draft compensation.

“And while New York’s front office hoped to move veterans such as Alec Burks to free playing time for younger Knicks prospects, management failed to finish several deal structures that were on the table for Burks, sources said,” Fischer reported.

“As with the three-team structure between the Lakers and Raptors—which would have sent Cam Reddish and Alec Burks to Los Angeles, landed Talen Horton-Tucker and Nerlens Noel in Toronto, and brought at least Goran Dragic plus the Raptors’ 2022 first-round pick—those talks fell short with the Knicks’ desire to receive more draft compensation, sources said.”

Acquiring Burks and Reddish would have helped the Lakers since both guys can shoot from the perimeter and defend. However, it looks like general manager Rob Pelinka didn’t want to part ways with future draft picks.

Pelinka After Trade Deadline: ‘We Didn’t Find a Deal That Had a Net Positive Effect’

Pelinka told reporters that the Lakers “didn’t find a deal that had a net positive effect for the short term success of the team and the long term” after the trade deadline passed. Russell Westbrook, Talen Horton-Tucker and Kendrick Nunn were the three players most heavily involved in trade talks.

“We were aggressive in a lot of conversations trying to improve the team – we always want to put this team in the best position to win a championship,” Pelinka said on a conference call following the trade deadline, via “But ultimately we didn’t find a deal that had a net positive effect for the short term success of the team and the long term, and those are both things we consider.”

Burks is averaging 11.0 points, 4.7 rebounds and 2.9 assists for the Knicks while shooting 38.6% from beyond the arc. He’s made 117 3-pointers, which would be fourth on the Lakers. He can also handle the ball and play high-level defense since he’s 6-foot-6.

Meanwhile, Reddish is averaging 10.1 points, 2.1 rebounds and 1.0 assists on the season. He suffered a shoulder injury on March 7 against the Sacramento Kings and will miss the rest of the campaign, but he may not have suffered that ailment if he was on the Lakers, who could have used his scoring ability and youth. Reddish is only 22 and shoots 32.5% on 3-pointers.

The Lakers have been a walking disaster this season. They are in ninth place in the Western Conference standings and have the 27th-ranked scoring defense. The purple and gold give up 113.6 points per game.

Burks and Reddish could have helped the Lakers on both sides of the floor, so it’s too bad Los Angeles and New York couldn’t agree to a deal. The LakeShow, who are still playing without Anthony Davis, will most likely be in the play-in tournament as the ninth or 10th seed and it doesn’t sound like players or coaches are expecting a magical run to occur.

Lakers Staff Members, Players May Be Ready for Season to End

According to Dan Woike of the L.A. Times, Lakers staff members and players may be ready for the season to end early. Other than LeBron James putting up spectacular numbers at 37, there have been no other bright spots for the Lakers this season.

“Multiple conversations with staff members and players have included the some version of the phrase, ‘at least there’s only a month left’ — not exactly the kind of message you hear from a group with realistic visions of playing until early summer,” Woike reported.

It will be interesting to see what moves Pelinka makes in the summer. People around the league expect Westbrook to be traded, but everyone on the roster except for LeBron and Davis should be expendable.

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