Lakers pursue Bojan Bogdanovic, possible three-team deal with Jae Crowder and more: Shams’ inside pass

Lakers pursue Bojan Bogdanovic, possible three-team deal with Jae Crowder and more: Shams’ inside pass

On Thursday, almost 90 percent of N.B.A‘s players become eligible for trade and the market will open in full force ahead of the G League Showcase in Las Vegas on December 19-22. The Showcase will provide team executives with the opportunity to meet face-to-face, network with year-round conversations and potential business concepts, and explore the G League’s elite Ignite roster, as well like other teams.

So far, NBA team executives say there has been an increase in discussions and multiple records about rival personnel. The parity of the league, with most teams competing for the postseason and tournament play, means the true buyers and sellers will take time to reveal themselves before the Feb. 9 trade deadline.

After a 2-10 start, the Los Angeles Lakers, now 11-15 and three games out of sixth place, have turned their season around and are seen as a key team on the trade market this season. The Lakers prioritize shooting in their talks with teams and have discussed packages that include salary and a protected first-round pick for Detroit‘s Bojan Bogdanovicsay league sources, who were granted anonymity so they could speak freely The Athletic. They have also discussed related concepts New York‘s Cam reddish i Evan Fournier, the sources said. with Anthony Davis have an MVP-caliber season and lebron james Coming off another strong campaign, it will be fascinating to monitor how these Lakers fare on February 9th.

Bogdanovic, 33, is in the midst of a tremendous season for the Pistons, averaging 21 points, 3.6 rebounds and 2.4 assists while shooting 50.8 percent from the field and 43.7 percent from 3-point range, including a 38-point outing in a loss. at the Lakers on Sunday night. Although Bogdanovic is a target for the Lakers (they are among a dozen teams asking about him, offering first- or second-round picks), Detroit shows no urgency to move him. In fact, the Pistons have expressed to rival teams a significant reluctance to move Bogdanovic, sources said.

How Athletic’s James Edwards III wroteBogdanovic has become a leader of this young Pistons group, a productive catalyst on and off the court, showing exactly why general manager Troy Weaver doesn’t want to move him.

For the Lakers, Russell Westbrook has found his stride as a sixth man, posting an astounding 15 points, eight assists and 5.4 rebounds on 42 percent shooting from the field and 32 percent from 3-point range in 22 games since the bench, compared to 10.3 points, 4.3. assists and 6.7 rebounds on 28.9% shooting from the field and 8.3% from 3-point range in three games as a starter.

Moving Westbrook into the sixth man role has worked brilliantly for first-time head coach Darvin Ham. Additionally, the Lakers have made it clear they prioritize championship-altering players for their two trade-eligible first-round picks (2027, 2029). It remains to be seen who might be available as the season progresses.

Meanwhile, there are two notable names surely on the market, and on the move phoenix‘s Jae Crowder i Atlanta‘s John Collins.

Multiple league sources said the Suns recently engaged in talks between three teams that would have sent Crowder to Milwaukee, four Bucks second-round picks along with players in Houston, and Eric Gordon and/or Kenyon Martin Jr. in Phoenix. The retention in the potential of three teams was that the rockets they’re coveting a first-round pick for Gordon, and for Martin a very good first-rounder, not a second-rounder, according to sources. The Rockets have had interest in Gordon from several competing teams, the sources said, but appear less willing to entertain the issue of Martin.

Martin has had a breakout third season, averaging 10.7 points, 5.2 rebounds and 24.2 minutes while shooting 54 percent from the field. The 21-year-old is under contract this season and 2023-24 and should have a strong extension next summer or a free agency offer in 2024. The Rockets have collected eight first-round picks through 2029 and have a core talented young man of players in Jalen Green, Kevin Porter Jr., Alperen SengunJabari Smith II, Tari Eason, Jae’Sean Tate and Martin

The Hawks and heat are also interested in Crowder, and Miami is expected to have a revitalized search soon because they have a ton of players, such as Dewayne Dedmon i Victor Oladipoavailable to be changed from January 15th. The Bucks could continue to look for a third team to facilitate a trade for Crowder, which would be a homecoming of sorts for the Georgia native who played his college ball at Marquette.

Meanwhile, the Hawks have had several teams in the market for Collins, including Utah, Washington, Brooklyn i Dallas, the sources said. Atlanta has shown no interest so far in a potential frame that would include Brooklyn’s Joe Harris, these sources said. Phoenix has a desire for Collins, but does not appear ready to take on the forward, who is in the second season of a five-year, $125 million deal.

Washington it has a piece inside Kyle Kuzma that would be attractive to Atlanta, as reported in last week’s feature on Wizards moving forwardbut there doesn’t seem to be any traction on a potential frame there.

The Nets, meanwhile, have been on the rise recently, winning seven of their last eight games and currently sitting as the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference at 16-12, and could see Collins as a needed jolt to the his front court.

Trail Blazers Point guard Gary Payton II is targeting his season debut in the next week or two, sources said. Payton, who signed a three-year, $28 million contract to join the Trail Blazers in July, has been out due to offseason surgery for a core muscle injury. Payton was a key rotation player for the Warriors’ 2022 championship team and should fill a similar role for the entire 14-12 Trail Blazers.

(Photo of Bojan Bogdanovic and Russell Westbrook: Nic Antaya/Getty Images)

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