It may just be weeks into the season, but the Lakers are already in the middle of trade rumors for the first big name to hit the rumor mill. Shocking, I know.
After a rather putrid start to the season, the Bulls are expected to begin exploring trades for star guard Zach LaVine, as Shams Charania of The Athletic reported early on Tuesday.
While that initial report did not include the Lakers — nor any team for that matter — Charania would later appear on “The Rally” and mention the Lakers, along with the Sixers and Heat, as teams expected to have interest in LaVine.
First, it’s important to note, even if it’s obvious to some, that the Lakers can not trade for LaVine until Dec. 15, unless they’re willing to do a one-for-one swap involving LeBron James. So, there is going to be no rush on their side to get a deal done.
And, realistically, Chicago isn’t going to rush to do a deal either. If their plan is to get the best package possible in return, that involves waiting until Dec. 15 when the vast majority of the league has their trade restrictions lifted.
That takes care of the matter of if the Lakers can trade for LaVine, but not the question of if they should. Our own Edwin Garcia went into more detail on that very question, but for a team that just squandered two years of the end of LeBron’s career chasing a three-star model that never panned out, doing it all over again would be insane.
Perhaps you don’t have to give up as much for LaVine as you did Westbrook, but all of those same pitfalls are going to exist. This is a core that got to the Western Conference Finals and while the start of this season has been rocky, wholesale change does not seem to be the solution.
It’s also important to remember that there is still a month between now and when the Lakers could do this trade. A lot can change in a month. Maybe the Lakers get healthy, go on a run and the idea of trading for LaVine seems pointless. Or the opposite could happen, the Lakers never find a rhythm and shaking things up seems like a solution.
For now, all we know is the Lakers have interest. And that’s not a shock as they had interest last season and LaVine hasn’t hidden his desire to play in Los Angeles. What’s next is a month of more trade rumors that may or may not include the Lakers.
Welcome back to the NBA season, folks!
You can follow Jacob on Twitter at @JacobRude.