The Los Angeles Lakers and New Orleans Pelicans executed the blockbuster trade of the summer. In a deal that sent star big man Anthony Davis to the Lakers with Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball, Josh Hart, three first-round draft picks, a first-round pick swap, and cash to the Pelicans, the NBA world was turned on its axis.

The Lakers made this trade to get a star alongside LeBron James, and the Pelicans made the move to enhance a rebuild. The early results have been extraordinary for both teams to the point where the trade has been a win-win.

Anthony Davis has the Lakers in contention

The Lakers are an NBA-best 15-2.

This team has the chance to be the best Lakers team of the current century. They have two of the 10 best players in the NBA (James and Davis) on the court at the end of games and a roster that complements their skill sets.

Kyle Kuzma is an electric scorer; Avery Bradley is a proven scorer; Danny Green is the prototypical three-and-d player; Jared Dudley is a pesty defender; JaVale McGee has been reliable in the paint on both ends of the floor; Dwight Howard has been a log in the paint off the bench.

James and Davis are playing to their strengths.

James is running the show, battering defenders off the dribble, and creating open shots for others. He's averaging 25.6 points, 11.0 assists (a career high), 7.4 rebounds, and 1.2 steals per game. Davis is playing inside and outside interchangeably, serving as an intimidating threat on both ends, and is benefiting from having James by his side. The big man is averaging 25.1 points, nine rebounds, 2.9 blocks, and 1.5 steals per game.

Yes, the Lakers nearly traded their entire future for Davis, but they had to. It was unclear if a star was going to sign with them in free agency, and it seemed like Davis had keen interest in going to L.A. You make these big-boy moves to win, and the Lakers look like a well-oiled-machine that's going to be difficult to slow down in the playoffs.

The Lakers are generating a buzz in the Staples Center that has been nonexistent since Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, and Andrew Bynum were the driving forces of the team's offense. The Lakers are in the news on a daily basis, per usual. But they're grabbing headlines for the right reasons: they're winning, not underperforming or creating off-court drama.

Sure, James and Davis being the sole sources of offense could be a bit of an issue in the playoffs, but that's fixable; they have plenty of capable scorers, veterans, and well-versed players around them. The Lakers acquired Davis to bolster their chances of winning a championship in James' four-year contract, and the two stars have been firing on all cylinders.

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Davis will be a free agent next summer, but if the Lakers win the NBA Finals or go on a deep playoff run this season, it's worth the price of admission. Plus, it helps their chances of keeping him past this season.

The Pelicans now have an eccentric young core

NOLA is in the midst of a rebuild, yes, but they're watching franchise building blocks — some from their return on Davis — establish themselves, Ingram in particular.

Over the first three years of his NBA career, Ingram was an enigma and labeled as a bust. His defense was suspect, he was an inefficient shooter, and never scored consistently or at a level deemed capable of being the focal point of an offense. Then he became a Pelican.

Whether it was a change of scenery, his teammates, or some other element, Ingram is blossoming into a star with the Pelicans. He's scoring at an elite level by means of playing with aggression, finishing inside, and sticking outside jump shots. Ingram is averaging a career-high 26.1 points, 7.2 rebounds, and 4.2 assists per game while shooting 50.6 percent from the field and 45.9 percent from beyond the arc (both career highs, as well).

Jaxson Hayes, who the Pelicans selected with the eighth pick in the 2019 NBA Draft and who became part of the team's return on Davis, is showcasing his potential. The center is a physical specimen who finishes emphatically inside, blocks shots with ease, and is a respectable defender.

Meanwhile, Ball has done a plausible job sharing the rock, getting others involved, and running head coach Alvin Gentry's offense, and Hart has been an offensive spark plug off the bench, averaging 12.6 points per game.

Ultimately, the Pelicans' future is reliant on Zion Williamson's health. The 2019 number one draft pick has dealt with recurring knee injuries since the NBA Summer League and hasn't made his regular season debut. Incorporating a healthy Williamson into the mix further weaponizes and complements a deep core.

A year ago the Pelicans were coming off a second-round playoff appearance, and they were expected to take the next step the ensuing season. Instead, they struggled out of the gate, Davis requested a trade — which likely results in him being booed in his return to the Smoothie King Center on Wednesday night — and they missed the playoffs. It was a mess.

President David Griffin had to move on from Davis, given the magnitude of a star asking for a trade and him hitting the open market in a year. Griffin did an exceptional job getting equal value for Davis, and Gentry and Pelicans player development have done an impressive job righting some of the youngsters they acquired. Those kids are only going to improve, and the picks they have coming their way in the near future will only add to the franchise's arsenal, or they can be used for a trade.