As the Feb. 23 trade deadline inches closer, Lou Williams is likely going to be the Los Angeles Lakers player that garners the most interest on the open market.
Williams’ 30 percent usage rate not only leads the Lakers, but is the highest mark of his career in that statistic, and while most players’ efficiency suffers as a result of increased usage, Williams has thrived.
The Lakers’ super sub has posted a career-high true shooting percentage (which accounts for the added value of 3-pointers and free throws) of 60.9 percent on his way to averaging a career-high 18.6 points per game, and he could help any playoff contender that needs a little instant scoring punch off of their bench.
Williams has previously said that he would remain focused on playing for the Lakers until he isn’t anymore, a sentiment he reiterated when rumors that the Washington Wizards have expressed interest in trading for Williams made their way onto his Sunday morning session on Instagram Live:
Breaking News from lamelo_smith in Lou's IG Live comments pic.twitter.com/RNp85ZwxsI— Harrison Faigen (@hmfaigen) February 19, 2017
Before the recording started (you can’t rewind IG Live), Williams had joked that someone would have called him if he was dealt, making it seem EXTREMELY unlikely that Instagram user lamelo_smith is the new Adrian Wojnarowski.
Williams’ mindset shouldn’t be surprising. As the subject of nearly non-stop trade speculation from basically the second the Lakers’ signed him to his bargain contract, Williams wouldn’t be able to function as a player if he sat around thinking about every single report or guess about where he may end up before Thursday’s trade deadline.
Like Williams, we’ll just have to assume he’s a Laker until then.