L.A. Lakers may have given up hope on trading Luol Deng
It looks like veteran forward Luol Deng will be serving the Purple and Gold for the entire duration of this season. It’s not a secret that the Lakers are fixated on finding ways to open up some extra cap space in order to put the team in a more favorable position to lure star free agents next summer, and trading Deng and his albatross contract would help the Lakers greatly to achieve that goal.
Unfortunately, shipping Deng out of Los Angeles isn’t an easy task. In an appearance on the Full Court Press show, Adrian Wojnarowski revealed that the Lakers seemed to have ended their pursuit of Deng suitors since there appear to be zero teams interested in trading for Deng without getting some assets Los Angeles is willing to part with.
Via Lakers Outsiders:
“Teams have asked for multiple first-round picks. They’ve asked for Brandon Ingram. They’ll ask for Kyle Kuzma. The Lakers have essentially given up on the idea that they can trade Deng.”
Deng’s current contract won’t expire until 2020. He is due to be paid $18 million next season and $18.81 more in the 2019-2020 campaign. Deng used to be one of the best players in is position but the 32-year-old small forward hasn’t been relevant since signing a four-year deal with the Lakers last season. He’s played in just one game this season after appearing in 56 last year. The Lakers could use the stretch provision to waive Deng and spread out his contract into twice the length of the remaining years in his contract plus another season.