The Los Angeles Lakers have been a mess so far since the season ended. First, Magic Johnson stepped down right before the conclusion of the season as their President of Basketball Operations.
Then, they part ways with head coach Luke Walton. After a search to find his replacement, the Lakers could not hire Tyronn Lue — the former Laker, who previously coached LeBron James with the Cleveland Cavaliers — because he refused to accept a three-year deal, along with the addition of Jason Kidd as his Associate Head Coach.
The team hired Frank Vogel as their new head coach. Despite all that, the team was able to get lucky and receive a Top 5 pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, as they are selecting fourth overall in June 20th’s Draft.
The Lakers will now have another asset in their attempt to make a blockbuster deal this off-season. With the Top 3 picks off the board — Zion Williamson, Ja Morant, R.J. Barrett — Los Angeles could use this pick to re-engage the New Orleans Pelicans in a potential huge deal to acquire Anthony Davis.
The disgruntled forward/center does not want to play for the team anymore. He attempted to force his hand in February when he requested a trade in hopes of potentially landing with the Lakers.
Those talks failed back then, which eventually led to Pelicans GM Dell Demps losing his job. Davis said that he still does not want to be a part of the team despite New Orleans having the No. 1 overall pick in June’s draft. This means the Lakers could be back in play once June’s draft rolls around.
“This is a powerful asset for us,” Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka said, according to ESPN’s Ohm Youngmisuk. “We owe a commitment to our fans to have an outstanding season next year. What this does is it gives us the ability to either select an impact player at four or possibly use this as an extremely valuable asset in [a] trade.”
If the Lakers cannot agree to a deal for Davis with their young assets, including the No. 4 overall pick, they could potentially pair those players together in a package with potentially the draft pick in a deal to get another star such as Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal.