According to many reports over the last several months, the Los Angeles Lakers have been very reluctant to trade away any of their future first-round draft picks unless they were to receive a player or players that would make them an instant championship contender.
The team sent three second-round picks, along with guard Kendrick Nunn, to the Washington Wizards for forward Rui Hachimura on Monday. While Hachimura will help the Lakers in multiple ways, virtually no one believes he will make them into an elite team.
At least one more trade will be needed to do so, but some feel there is a schism between the Lakers’ front office and LeBron James’ camp. The former wants to balance the present and the future, while the latter wants a real shot at winning another championship, even if it means mortgaging the franchise’s future.
General manager Rob Pelinka reiterated the team’s position on possibly trading any future first-round picks, and he said he would be willing to do so for a package that would make the Lakers elite.
There are two weeks to go before the NBA trade deadline, which is Feb. 9. Los Angeles still has some big trade chips to use, including the expiring contracts of Russell Westbrook, Patrick Beverley and Lonnie Walker IV.
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