After a season of speculation over whether or not he’d eventually be dealt, the Los Angeles Lakers pulled the trigger and traded Lou Williams to the Houston Rockets in exchange for guard Corey Brewer and a first-round draft pick, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of the Vertical.
The first rounder the Rockets are sending the Lakers is unprotected, according to David Aldridge of NBA.com.
Williams has been a spark-plug off the bench for the Lakers this season, averaging a team-high 18.6 points per game off of the bench for the team on a career-high 60.9 percent true-shooting percentage, despite increasing his usage to a career-high level (30 percent of the Lakers’ possessions this season ended in a shot, assist, turnover or drawn foul from Williams).
Despite this production, Williams’ age (30-years-old) made it unlikely he’d factor into the Lakers’ future, and his production on a contract paying him just $7 million each this season and next, made him a desirable asset as a dose of offense off of the bench for the Rockets, and one who James Harden himself was reportedly enamored with.
Williams himself confirmed the move shortly after Wojnarowski’s report:
Thanx for the love L.A, I've enjoyed my stay.— Lou Williams (@TeamLou23) February 22, 2017
Brewer ($7,612,172) actually makes slightly more than Williams, but nabbing a first-rounder — even a late one — was always just about the ceiling for a return on Williams. The new Lakers’ front office’s first move was a solid one.