Lakers Talk New Blockbuster 3-Team Trade to Land Ex-Rival & Shooter: Report

Lakers exec Rob Pelinka

Getty Lakers exec Rob Pelinka

A new potential blockbuster trade has emerged for the Los Angeles Lakers to consider as a way to move Russell Westbrook. HoopsHype’s Michael Scotto reported that the Lakers have discussed a three-team trade with the Knicks and Jazz as part of a deal that would send Donovan Mitchell to the Knicks.

Los Angeles would land a package of solid role players including former Clippers nemesis Patrick Beverley, sharpshooter Bojan Bogdanovic (or Malik Beasley) and ex-Lakers guard Jordan Clarkson. To make the salaries work, Westbrook would likely go to the Jazz in this trade scenario.

“The Lakers had conversations about joining the Jazz and Knicks a few weeks ago in a potential three-team trade, league sources told HoopsHype,” Scotto detailed on August 5, 2022. “The proposed three-team trade scenario included Westbrook going to Utah and getting bought out. Utah would send Donovan Mitchell to the Knicks, a combination of two players, including Patrick Beverley and Jordan Clarkson, Bojan Bogdanovic or Malik Beasley to the Lakers, and the Jazz would receive significant draft pick compensation from the Knicks and Lakers. The Knicks also would’ve had to part with veteran salary filler(s), such as Derrick Rose to help make the salaries work.”

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Bogdanovic Would Help Fill the Shooting Void on the Lakers

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Bogdanovic would be a significant addition for the Lakers and the career 39.2% three-point shooter fills an immediate void on the roster. The Jazz forward averaged 18.1 points, 4.3 rebounds and 1.7 assists while shooting 38.7% from long range during the 2021-22 season. After years of attempting to get under LeBron James’ skin as an opponent, Beverley has made no secret about his desire to play with King James.

Clarkson would be a familiar face for Lakers fans after playing his first four seasons in Los Angeles. The guard posted 16 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game while shooting 31.8% from behind the arc last season.

Are the Lakers Willing to Lose a Chance to Land Kyrie?

The biggest question surrounding this deal, talks with the Pacers and other trade discussions the Lakers have been linked to is how it potentially impacts the team’s chances to land Kyrie Irving. This three-way trade would all but assuredly take the Lakers out of the Irving sweepstakes, which still appears to be the team’s first choice of potential deals.

The Lakers have been reluctant to attach multiple future first-round draft picks to find a team to take on Westbrook’s $47 millions salary. According to Scotto, the general consensus is that the Lakers will be unable to move Westbrook without including their 2027 and 2029 first-round selections.

“As noted on the latest HoopsHype podcast, the prevailing thought around the league is any three-team trade involving Russell Westbrook would need to include the 2027 and 2029 first-round picks from the Lakers with as few protections as possible,” Scotto explained.

As the season nears, time will tell if the Lakers will become more aggressive in their pursuit of Irving. The unfortunate realty is the proposed three-team deal essentially is just the Lakers undoing their previous Westbrook trade by acquiring a package of role players similar to what the team gave up for the star guard on the night of the 2021 NBA draft. As for Irving, the point guard is now in a “good place” with the Nets, per SNY.TV’s Ian Begley.

“A source close to Irving said this week that the seven-time All-Star is in a good place with the Nets and comfortable entering the 2022-23 season,” Begley wrote on August 4.