The Los Angeles Lakers have struggled against bigger wings at times this season, and they were reportedly at one point interested in addressing that weakness by adding New York Knicks forward Moe Harkless.
Harkless started the year with the LA Clippers, but was dealt to the Knicks in the trade for Marcus Morris, and seemed like a possible buyout candidate given that he’s a veteran on a team going nowhere this season.
Even after Harkless said last week that he wasn’t planning on seeking a buyout from his hometown team, some hope that he might change that stance was rekindled when he talked to reporters on Thursday about how hard it’s been to adjust to a losing situation.
According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, that hope is dead. Harkless will remain a Knick for the rest of the year:
No deadline buyout discussions with Knicks and F Mo Harkless, league sources tell ESPN. He will finish season with New York, despite some options with contenders. Sunday is deadline for players to be waived and become eligible for a playoff roster elsewhere.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 29, 2020
Had Harkless become available, he would have given the Lakers the bigger wing defender they could use, but they’re evidently not done surveying the market just yet. The front office reportedly has a meeting set up with former LeBron James teammate, former Rob Pelinka client and current Klutch Sports client Dion Waiters for this week, a meeting they rather transparently set up for after this deadline just in case other players — such as Harkless — unexpectedly became available to them as options if they and their teams reached a buyout agreement.
Barring a surprise, it now looks like the market is what it is. Maybe they’ll give J.R. Smith a call, too?
Stay tuned for more updates, and keep track of every buyout free agent the Lakers are linked to on this page.