Although 33-year-old LeBron James is not showing any signs of slowing down, 25-year-old Anthony Davis is widely viewed as the next face of the NBA. Originally the No. 1 pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, Davis and the New Orleans Pelicans have not had much success.
As a result, Davis has been linked to numerous teams, including the Los Angeles Lakers — especially when he signed with Rich Paul of Klutch Sports, who of course also represents James.
Davis has not even entered the prime years of his career but it is no secret he wants to win. If traded, the team that lands him will have an opportunity to win at a high level for the next decade.
The Pelicans are aware of the situation and are trying to improve on their 15-15 record to begin the 2018-19 NBA season, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:
“New Orleans is gonna remain active in trade talks. They’ve used their first-round pick in other deals to help improve the group around Anthony Davis, and they’ll do that again. You’ll see their pick in trade talks, but they’re not going to do it for an incremental improvement. They’re going to do it to try to get involved in big deals. They were really aggressive with Jimmy Butler. Right until the last 24 hours when Minnesota went with the Philadelphia deal, New Orleans was really in there. They’re going to have to continue to do that and improve this team between now and the trade deadline, because they know they’re on the clock with Anthony Davis.”
Along with being one of the best players already, Davis has an team-friendly contract compared to the rest of the league with two-years and $55.8 million remaining.
After not trading for Paul George and Kawhi Leonard, Davis is perhaps the only player the Lakers should trade the young core for at this point.
As the Lakers are trying to win now, they are still being mindful of their $38 million in cap space for 2019 free agency.