Pelicans GM David Griffin has finally pulled the trigger: Anthony Davis is officially a Laker.
Welcome to LA, Anthony Davis. (via gz.jr/ Instagram) pic.twitter.com/3eGfqd6HIM
— ESPNLosAngeles (@ESPNLosAngeles) June 16, 2019
Anthony Davis is being shipped to the Los Angeles Lakers in exchange for Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball, Josh Hart, and three first-round picks (including this year’s 4th overall pick).
Davis requested a trade from the New Orleans Pelicans in January and has made it known that he would prefer to be traded to the Lakers. Los Angeles made an aggressive push for Davis before the trade deadline, but the two teams we unable to come to terms. Former Pelicans GM Dell Demps practically refused deal him to LA. Later that month, Demps was terminated, and David Griffin was brought in as his replacement.
The Lakers are in a great position: They have Lebron James, Kyle Kuzma, and now Anthony Davis. Not only do they have two superstars, but they have the cap space to add another.
If Pelicans and Lakers waited until July 30 to complete trade, Lakers could’ve had $32.5M in cap space — enough to pursue a max level free agent. By waiting 30 days, Lakers would be acting like a team over the cap and thus allowed to use 4th overall pick in draft as salary. https://t.co/BdKtxFtvai
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 16, 2019
This trade makes sense for both sides involved. LA finally brings in Davis, and the Pelicans are able to move on from their disgruntled superstar and rebuild around the younger pieces they received in return.
New Orleans now possesses two top-5 picks in the 2019 NBA Draft, which will be held June 20. It’s basically a given that the Pelicans will snag Zion Williamson with the No. 1 overall pick, but it will be interesting to see what the front office decides to do with the No. 4 overall pick. They can try to trade the pick for a more proven player, or they can select another prospect to add to Zion and their NBA Draft haul. I personally would like to see New Orleans take either Jarrett Culver from Texas Tech or De’Andre Hunter from Virginia. Either player would be a great addition to the now-youthful Pelicans.
This potential Pelicans core 📈
No. 4 pick
Two future 1sts pic.twitter.com/FpQID77O5L
— Bleacher Report NBA (@BR_NBA) June 16, 2019
For the most part, I like this trade. Ingram and Hart will be instant contributors to this team, and bringing in three first-round picks is never a bad thing. Ball; however, is the weak link here. Ball has stated he doesn’t want to play in New Orleans. This could cause some issues on and off the court. I would have liked to see Kyle Kuzma replace Lonzo Ball in this trade.