The Los Angeles Lakers dodged a bullet on Tuesday by keeping their lottery pick and actually moving up in the NBA Draft to No. 2. Apparently, now that the second overall pick is in their pocket, D’Angelo Russell might’ve become expendable.
According to Jake Fischer of Sports Illustrated, a few teams around the league are evaluating potential trade packages involving Russell:
With the Los Angeles Lakers coming away with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft following Tuesday night’s lottery, multiple NBA teams are evaluating trade packages for D’Angelo Russell, league sources told SI.com.
The surplus of talented point guards at the top of the draft may be the reason behind these trade rumors surfacing. Markelle Fultz, Lonzo Ball, and De’Aaron Fox are expected to be taken within the first five picks of the upcoming draft, and it is possible that the Lakers brass may want to move forward with a true point guard while seeing what they can get for Russell.
With Paul George supposedly wanting to eventually end up with the Lakers, Magic Johnson and Rob Pelinka may be preparing to make a move to get him now rather than in NBA free agency next summer. Russell might be a part of that trade, or in another deal, they may be considering.
A lot can and most likely will happen between now and the 2017 NBA Draft. The Lakers have two picks at their disposal at No. 2 and No. 28 and a lot of young talented players like D’Angelo that will certainly attract the attention of teams around the league.