Lakers ‘Checked In’ on $13 Million Veteran Floor-Spacing Trade Target

Rob Pelinka, Los Angeles Lakers

Getty Vice President of Basketball Operations and General Manager of the Los Angeles Lakers Rob Pelinka.

The Los Angeles Lakers may be in a better position to make a smaller, fringe addition rather than the blockbuster trade they have often been associated with during this transaction window.

With a need for three-point shooting, they have shown interest in Detroit Pistons forward Danilo Gallinari, according to HoopsHype’s Michael Scotto.

“Another player rival executives are monitoring is Danilo Gallinari who’s continued to be a knockdown 3-point shooter while playing minutes at the four and small ball five at times in the final year of his contract,” Scotto wrote on February 5. The Lakers are among the teams who’ve checked in on Gallinari’s price tag to acquire him, league sources told HoopsHype.”

Gallinari, 35, is averaging 7.5 points, 2.8 rebounds, and 1.3 assists this season.

A career 38.2% three-point shooter, Gallinari is shooting just 35.5% from deep this season. But he is shooting 58.3% from deep since the Washington Wizards traded him to the Pistons on January 14.

The 6-foot-10 Gallinari is in the final year of a two-year, $13.2 million contract.

Proposed Lakers Trade Lands Pistons’ Danilo Gallinari

Gallinari’s contract is not large enough – nor is he the caliber of player, particularly at this stage of his career – to warrant surrendering one of the Lakers’ pricier players like Rui Hachimura or D’Angelo Russell, both of whom the Lakers’ have grown lukewarm on including in a trade.

And they aren’t making Austin Reaves available for anything short of a legitimate third star, per The Athletic’s Jovan Buha on January 26.

With only one first-round pick at the Lakers’ disposal, this hypothetical trade could land Galliari.

Lakers get:

– Danilo Gallinari

Pistons get:

Gabe Vincent
– 2024 second-round pick (via LAC)
– 2025 second-round pick (via LAC)

Vincent, 27, has missed all but five games this season, undergoing an arthroscopic procedure on his knee in late December. In the first year of a three-year, $33 million contract, he is a staple in recent trade talks.

“Lakers guard Gabe Vincent, who’s become included in Los Angeles’ outgoing trade conversations, sources said, appears on track to return by early March,” Yahoo Sports’ Jake Fischer wrote on February 5. “He was given an 8-10 week recovery period and has so far been recuperating on schedule, sources said.”

Lakers Players Shrug Off Trade Rumors

While the outside noise increases in the final days before the trade deadline, Lakers players are staying focused on the court.

“This is who we have, so there’s nothing else to talk about,” LeBron James said, per Buha on February 5. “It’s not a question for me. I love who we have in the locker room. And that’s all I worry about.

“I don’t get caught up in that. We’re gonna go out and prepare ourselves every single night no matter what it is. No matter who’s out on this team. No matter what. So it’s my job and it’s AD’s job as the two captains to make sure we keep the main thing the main thing. The main focus is now: Thursday’s game at home. And look forward to that matchup.”

Russell, a central figure in Lakers trade chatter, was just as dismissive if not more so.

“I don’t care at all. Show up to work,” Russell told reporters on February 5. “I can’t control that my contract makes sense to be traded either. So, I mean, just play. Can’t control that. Once again, I don’t care at all.

“I’ve been traded before here, so my approach is just a little different. I really just genuinely humbly don’t care,”