A longtime Lakers target in Terry Rozier was finally traded on Tuesday morning. The Hornets guard will be staying in the Eastern Conference as the Miami Heat reportedly will complete a trade that will include Kyle Lowry and a first round pick, according to both SHams Charania of The Athletic and Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.
JUST JN: Miami is nearing a trade to acquire Charlotte's Terry Rozier for a package sending Kyle Lowry and draft compensation that includes a first-round pick, league sources tell @TheAthletic @Stadium. pic.twitter.com/FGFkpDifYe— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) January 23, 2024
The Charlotte Hornets are trading Terry Rozier to the Miami Heat for a 2027 first-round pick and Kyle Lowry, sources tell ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 23, 2024
For a number of reasons, this likely caught the Lakers’ eye. First, Rozier has been someone the team has been linked to for multiple seasons, dating back to a potential Russell Westbrook trade. Even after trading Westbrook, though, the Lakers have remained interested in Rozier. With him off the board, it’s one less potential option available.
The trade does set up the likelihood of Kyle Lowry being bought out. It seems long ago that the Lakers had lengthy trade discussions for Lowry that never came to fruition. That version of Lowry in Toronto, though, is much different than the older version of Lowry now. However, if he was bought out, the Lakers almost certainly would have interest again.
As it pertains to the Dejounte Murray trade, this takes the Heat out of the running, making it one less team to bid against. The Lakers and Hawks are at a bit of a standstill and Atlanta doesn’t have to trade Murray before the deadline, but Miami acquiring Rozier means they aren’t going to be contenders for Murray now and likely later in the offseason with a first round pick being included in the deal, giving them fewer assets to trade.
This doesn’t mean a Murray trade is imminent, but it does improve the Lakers chances of acquiring him, should the Hawks make a move in the coming weeks.
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