There has been a lot of noise surrounding the Los Angeles Lakers leading up to Saturday, when trade restrictions on most players will be lifted.
The Lakers have been linked to a number of players over the past few days, the most prominent one being Trevor Ariza, but they reportedly don’t plan on sending any of their young players in a deal for Ariza.
In fact, according to Broderick Turner of the L.A. Times, the Lakers are saying they won’t deal any of their young core unless they get a superstar player in return:
The Lakers have informed teams that have called about trade proposals that they will not give up any of their young core unless it’s for a superstar player, one person said.
That seems like a given, but apparently it’s not. It does beg the questions, though, as to what or who qualifies as a “superstar” player.
Beal is one of the best shooting guards in the NBA, and in spite of the Wizards’ losing record, he’ll likely be named an All-Star again this year. He’s also someone that would be a seamless fit next to LeBron James.
But is he a player that the Lakers would consider trading one or more of Lonzo Ball, Josh Hart, Brandon Ingram or Kyle Kuzma for? Is he a superstar? Such semantics are where things start to get sticky.
In the cases of players like Kevin Durant, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Anthony Davis, Kawhi Leonard and Steph Curry, that question is less difficult to answer, but barring an incident of catastrophic proportions, none of those players will be available before the trade deadline on Feb. 7.
In other words, it’s safe to assume the Lakers’ young core isn’t going anywhere for now. However, if the front office can’t lure a superstar free agent next summer, these conversations might rear their head again.
You follow this author on Twitter at @RadRivas. For more talk on the Lakers potential trades and which young guys we think might be on the move, listen to the latest episode of “The 30” on the Silver Screen and Roll podcast network below.