The NBA season has passed the halfway point for quite some time, with an exciting upcoming weekend in New Orleans with the All-Star activities. It is at this point in the season when many head coaches begin rethinking their approach for the rest of the season, as their current record indicates which way the season is heading.
The Los Angeles Lakers, with their 19-37 record, are currently positioned in the bottom three in the NBA standings. Head coach Luke Walton has made it known that the youth movement is in full effect, upon the benchings of Timofey Mozgov and Luol Deng.
Walton is attempting to find out what this team is made of, while giving that necessary experience to the young core in hopes of talent development and an overall improved team chemistry. While this may spell great results for his players in the long run, it also means that some capable players are going to see their roles changed.
Now that there are about two weeks left for serious trade negotiations, it is no secret general manager Mitch Kupchak and the Lakers have begun active trade talks. It appears as though sixth-man Lou Williams, who has been consistently torching his opponents, is available on the trade market, via Alex Kennedy of HoopsHype.com:
“In this recent video, I mentioned that the Los Angeles Lakers may look to trade Lou Williams and/or Nick Young. On Tuesday, a general manager confirmed that the Lakers have, in fact, shopped Williams and seem likely to move him prior to the deadline.”
Williams was seen as the Lakers hottest commodity, as he is in the process of putting together a career year. The 11-year veteran has excelled in Walton’s system, as the offensive firepower off the bench.
With the NBA trade deadline set for March 1, many playoff teams are shopping around the NBA, attempting to add a key piece that can fuel them to the playoffs or even beyond that. On the other hand, many non-contending teams can reevaluate the talent on their roster and see if they can obtain something beneficial in place of one of their assets.
This season, Williams is averaging a career high in points, three-pointers made and three-point percentage, with a deadly offensive arsenal that is full of compensating moves.
Many teams, including the Cleveland Cavaliers, have been linked to guards around the NBA that can provide an offensive punch off the bench. Not only can Williams provide that punch, but his commitment to both ends of the floor has been a resurgence for his overall game.
Basketball aficionados suggest that the Lakers will depart with talent such as Williams, in order to continue the youth movement that coincides with their draft pick dilemma heading into next season. Williams not only leads the Lakers in scoring off the bench, but also has consistently proven to be the best offensive weapon on the floor and has finished out plenty of games.