Earlier this week, Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report wrote that the Lakers have interest in veteran point guard Patrick Beverley, should the Utah Jazz — as expected — make him available in the wake of their seemingly inevitable Donovan Mitchell trade.
However, one of the players on the Lakers whose contract would best fit in such a swap, Talen Horton-Tucker, is not someone the team has interest in sending to Utah for Beverley, according to NBA Insider Marc Stein’s latest dispatch on Substack:
While they continue to register the league’s only tangible trade interest in Brooklyn’s Kyrie Irving, it’s likewise true that the Lakers have prioritized adding speed, youth and athleticism to the roster. As such, according to one source familiar with the team’s thinking, there is no push forthcoming from the Lakers’ side to swap Talen Horton-Tucker (as rumored) for Patrick Beverley, who ranks as one of Utah’s very available veterans alongside Mike Conley, Bojan Bogdanović and Jordan Clarkson. The Jazz acquired Beverley and Malik Beasley in the Rudy Gobert trade and have made Beasley available as well.
There are a few reasons that this one-for-one swap was always slightly unlikely, anyway.
For one thing, Beverley for Horton-Tucker straight up literally does not work as a legal trade, according to Fanspo’s trade machine:
So theoretically more pieces would have to be involved if this deal was going to happen, which — as noted in the above screenshot — isn’t even allowed for another month or so.
On top of the CBA reasons constricting such a swap, there is also the reality that Beverley — a 10-year veteran on a one-year deal for a team that wants to lose as many games as possible — is probably going to get bought out. Why would the Lakers give up one of their only tradeable contracts for him when they can potentially sign him for the minimum in a few months? Waiting for additions in the buyout market has been a staple of the Rob Pelinka era, and I wouldn’t expect that to change now.
Finally, if the Lakers really are going to potentially get backed into a corner and end up having to run it back with Russell Westbrook... do they really want to trade for his mortal enemy before training camp? Gonna go ahead and guess probably not.
For all those reasons — along with the reality that the Lakers are still trying to get Kyrie Irving, or one of their Plan Bs or Cs — don’t hold your breath for a trade for Beverley. He may end up being a target, but he’s probably further down the team’s priority list for now.