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Report: Pelicans are open to delaying Anthony Davis trade with Lakers, but it likely won’t happen

Anthony Davis

The Los Angeles Lakers made the big move to acquire New Orleans Pelicans star Anthony Davis on Saturday afternoon, but there are some complications to the deal that may impact their level of cap space this summer.

Should the trade be completed on July 6 as currently expected, the Lakers could lose out on nearly $9 million in cap space if Davis also wants his trade bonus, thus losing their capacity to offer a max contract in free agency:

Although the Lakers would obviously benefit significantly from delaying the deal, it does not appear that Pelicans executive vice president David Griffin will accommodate those wishes, even if he’s somewhat open to the idea.

Tania Ganguli of the Los Angeles Times writes that the Pelicans are still hoping to use the No. 4 overall pick they acquired from the Lakers as potential leverage in yet another deal they might make before Thursday’s draft:

Although the Pelicans are open to working with the Lakers and delaying the trade, it’s unlikely that will happen, according to multiple people familiar with their thinking. New Orleans’ priority will be to make the fourth pick as attractive as possible to another team.

It’s likely that whatever team they trade the fourth pick to will want the player in their building as quickly as possible, and will want him to play at the Las Vegas Summer League, which will be held July 5-15. If the Pelicans opt to keep the pick, they might also want him to participate in Summer League.

Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka might have to get creative with the roster if he hopes to free up more cap space and make a run at the likes of Kemba Walker, Kyrie Irving, Kawhi Leonard or Jimmy Butler.