At 27-32, 13th in the Western Conference standings, the Los Angeles Lakers are struggling. Even with LeBron James having one of the most dominant stretches of his career to start 2023, L.A. has been unable to overcome a rash of injuries. The most significant of these to All-Star big man Anthony Davis, who has only appeared in 101 regular season games for the Lakers over the past three seasons.

Although LeBron himself has missed his fair share of games, longtime radio host Colin Cowherd says that “LeBron and his camp have been frustrated by how many minutes he has to play.”

“They can’t depend on Anthony Davis. They’re a little upset that Darvin Ham is not keeping the pressure on Anthony Davis… I talked to an NBA source who I’ve known for a long time. He said the Dallas Mavericks and Anthony Davis, keep your eye on it.”

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By the numbers, Davis has been highly productive when healthy, averaging 26.0 points, 12.3 rebounds, 2.0 blocks, and 1.2 steals per game this season while shooting a career-high 56.2 percent from the field.

But after averaging 30.3 points per game on 66.1 percent shooting from the field in December, a timid Davis has gone cold. The eight-time All-Star has averaged 22.5 points per game on 48.6 percent shooting from the field since January.

Davis being linked to the Dallas Mavericks could be an avenue for L.A. to acquire star guard Kyrie Irving. An impending free agent, the two teams could agree to a sign-and-trade headlined by Kyrie and AD. Although the Lakers can free up enough cap space to sign Irving outright, the Mavs do have the ability to sign Irving to a more lucrative contract.

However, this also gives L.A. the opportunity to build around LeBron and Kyrie instead.