The Los Angeles Lakers 2022-23 season has not gone according to plan at all. The hope was that if they were able to shore up their bench over the offseason, they would be able to emerge as a title contender again this season. Unfortunately, that simply has not happened for them so far, and they may need to go to work on the trade market before the 2023 NBA trade deadline if they want to salvage their season.
With a 16-21 record, the Lakers are currently sitting in 12th place in the Western Conference right now. That’s not as bad as it seems, as they are actually only eight games out of first place, but the longer they continue to sit towards the bottom of the standings, the more difficult it will become for them to dig themselves out of the hole they currently find themselves in.
The Lakers have seemingly never been content with their roster this season, which has resulted in them being involved in trade rumors all season long. The trade deadline is fast approaching, and it feels like that will be the last chance for Los Angeles to save their season. So with that in mind, let’s take a look at two trades the Lakers should strongly consider making as the deadline draws near.
2. Lakers pick up Cam Reddish in exchange for Patrick Beverley and Kendrick Nunn
The Lakers search for offensive production hasn’t yielded much this season, and they have really struggled to overcome the loss of Anthony Davis recently, even with some big games from LeBron James. Los Angeles needs to add another scorer to their roster, and unload some of the dead weight they have at the back of their rotation, which makes a move for Cam Reddish a real possibility for them.
Reddish is currently getting no minutes for a struggling New York Knicks squad, and it seems like only a matter of time until he ends up getting dealt by the Knicks. Reddish has proven he can string together buckets when he gets an opportunity to do so, but he hasn’t gotten that chance with New York. A team like the Lakers could certainly use his services.
Despite all the trade rumors suggesting big names could be on the move in L.A., it seems increasingly likely that both Patrick Beverley and Kendrick Nunn won’t be with the team past the trade deadline. Beverley hasn’t panned out at all this season, but he’s still a strong defender, which could be appealing to the Knicks, and Nunn just isn’t getting minutes this season.
Considering how New York is likely looking to be a playoff contender this season, they would probably like to get some players that could help them this season rather than a second-round draft pick, which is basically all they would be able to get for Reddish otherwise. Both teams could benefit from this deal, so it seems like it has a real shot of happening.
1. Lakers finally put together a big package to land Myles Turner and Buddy Hield
The Lakers have been getting linked to Myles Turner and Buddy Hield for ages now, but it’s clear that acquiring these two players would be exactly what this team needs to become a contender. Los Angeles’ front office has to determine whether they want to contend now, or in the future, with the future being quite far away considering how few draft picks they have over the next few seasons.
When he’s been healthy, the Lakers have been rolling with Anthony Davis at center, despite his desire to not play the position. Adding Turner would allow Davis to shift back to his preferred power forward position, but it also goes with saying that L.A.’s big man rotation is not very good right now. Turner is having a strong season for Indiana (16.8 PPG, 7.9 RPG, 1.5 APG, 2.1 BPG, 55.2 FG%, 40.2 3P%) and would be the perfect player to help the Lakers turn things around.
Similar to the reasoning for picking up Reddish, the Lakers need more scorers, and in particular, more shooting. That’s precisely what Hield offers. Hield is having a good season as well (17.9 PPG, 4.8 RPG, 2.7 APG, 46.2 FG%, 42.9 3P%) and if he could hit nearly 43 percent of his threes for the Lakers, that would be like a dream come true for them.
Of course, making this deal would cost the Lakers one, if not both, of their future first-round draft picks, which is very important to note because they only have two left that they can trade. Los Angeles’ front office has to decide if they seriously want to make this team a contender, because if they do, making this trade for Turner and Hield would be the deal they would absolutely have to make before the deadline.