With the Feb. 6 NBA trade deadline just over two weeks away, the Los Angeles Lakers have made calls to try and upgrade their roster, and one of the names they’ve reportedly inquired about is Detroit Pistons guard Derrick Rose.
According to Chris B. Haynes of Yahoo Sports, the Lakers are one of the teams that have expressed interest in the former league MVP, along with the Philadelphia 76ers. Here are the full details, per Haynes:
The Clippers have checked in on Rose as well, but it was more of a common exploratory talk, sources said.
The Lakers and Sixers are in search of point guard assistance for the stretch run, sources said.
Rose is in the midst of his best season since he tore his ACL with the Chicago Bulls in 2012.
In 25.8 minutes per game, the 31-year-old guard is averaging 18.4 points on 49.8% shooting from the field. Rose is the only player in the NBA currently averaging more than 18 points per game in less than 26 minutes per game. He’s also one of four players averaging at least 25 points and 8 assists per 36 minutes this season. The others are Luka Doncic, LeBron James and Trae Young.
Rose has been great, but the situation he’s in has a lot to do with how successful he’s been, which is why he hasn’t asked for a trade, according to Haynes:
Rose is happy with the Pistons and isn’t looking to be traded, sources said, but the decision is beyond his control being. He has one more year at $7.6 million remaining on his contract.
But if the Lakers put together a package that would set the Pistons up for a brighter future in the event that Andre Drummond walks in free agency, they would have to consider moving Rose. The question is: Do the Lakers have that package? That all depends on how both parties view Kyle Kuzma.
If the Lakers value Kuzma too much to include him in a trade for Rose, talks will likely grow stale fast, as he’s their most attractive asset. However, there’s also the very real possibility that the Pistons don’t see the Flint, Michigan native as a valuable asset because they have $71.2 million committed to Blake Griffin through 2021. Additionally, they’re grooming 19-year-old rookie Sekou Doumbouya to be their power forward of the future.
While a trade could materialize between now and Feb. 6, there are enough question marks to be skeptical about one getting done.
If a trade does happen, though, it will probably be something like Kuzma, Quinn Cook, Talen Horton-Tucker and cash for Rose and Markieff Morris. Not only would that give the Lakers two quality veteran players on team-friendly contracts, it would also open a spot on the roster for Darren Collison or someone else in the buyout market.
Again, there are hurdles that would have to be cleared, but if the Lakers could nab both Rose and Morris before the trade deadline, it would be hard to bet against them in any playoff series.