Having previously resisted breaking up their young core for Paul George and Kawhi Leonard in recent years, the Los Angeles Lakers face the possibility yet again as Anthony Davis requested a trade from the New Orleans Pelicans.
Although the earliest he would become a free agent is by opting out after next season, Davis has long been rumored to be a Lakers’ target. He signed a five-year, $145 million contract extension in July 2015 but isn’t interested in inking a five-year, $240 million supermax deal this summer.
Davis’ request may have created a bit of an uncomfortable setting within the Pelicans organization, but they’ve made it clear the team will move forward on their terms.
Additionally, Davis making a trade request has led to the NBA launching an investigation, per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski:
NBA spokesman: “We commenced an investigation this morning upon reading the reports regarding Anthony Davis. That process is ongoing.” One reason: an on-the-record request for a trade by an agent or a player. Davis could be fined.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 28, 2019
It’s currently unclear what the nature or focus of the league’s investigation is. As mentioned above, Davis could face a fine, but he is not the first player to request a trade.
In their statement to address Davis’ demand going public, the Pelicans asked the NBA to ‘strictly enforce’ the league’s tampering rules. That would appear to be a veiled shot at the Lakers and perhaps LeBron James and agent Rich Paul.
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