On Tuesday afternoon, the Los Angeles Lakers finally pulled the trigger on a blockbuster deal that saw them trade away point guard D’Angelo Russell to the Brooklyn Nets.
However, it appears that the Lakers may have just begun of series of major moves, as Brad Turner of the LA Times is reporting that the team has presented a much more lucrative trade offer to the Indiana Pacers for All-Star forward Paul George ahead of the 2017 NBA Draft on Thursday night.
Just heard @Lakers offered @Pacers either Jordan Clarkson or Julius Randle and 27, 28 pick for Paul George.
— Brad Turner (@BA_Turner) June 20, 2017
The trade with the Nets not only allowed the team to shed Timofey Mozgov‘s contract, which has three years left worth $54 million, but they also acquired another first-round pick at the 27th overall spot in this year’s draft. This selection packaged, alongside the 28th overall pick and either Julius Randle or Jordan Clarkson, could be a much more appealing offer for the Pacers to consider.
George has made it quite clear to Indiana that he wants to hit the free-agent market next summer and join the Lakers, which only heightens the internal push from both sides to work something out. This improved deal by Los Angeles makes a trade more realistic.
Keep in mind, the Pacers don’t want to be left empty-handed if the 27-year-old gets the opportunity to walk away in free agency in the summer of 2018. All of this may be signaling that it’s just a matter of time before the Lakers work out a deal for the George before the 2017 NBA Draft.