With the Chicago Bulls struggling so mightly and the Los Angeles Lakers playing so inconsistently, it’s not much of a surprise to see that the Zach LaVine to Lakers rumors have surfaced once again. If anything, it’s shocking that they haven’t been even stronger over the past couple of weeks.
LaVine has been tangled up in Lakers trade rumors for quite a while now. It makes sense, considering his past with the UCLA Bruins and the fact that he shares agents with LeBron James and Anthony Davis, being represented by Rich Paul and Klutch Sports.
Why The Lakers Shouldn’t Trade For LaVine
All teams involving LeBron usually make big in-season movements. The never-ending narrative about the greatest small forwards in NBA history — and one of the greatest players overall — needing more help has been present again this season.
On paper, trading for LaVine could make sense, especially for a team like the Los Angeles Lakers. Taking a deeper look, however, it might not be the best idea. With that in mind, we’re going to let you know why the fans of the Purple and Gold should put those LaVine to Lakers rumors to rest.
Zach LaVine still has three more years and a player option left in his contract. He’s making an average salary of $43,031,940 per year, with that number rising all the way to $48,967,380 in his final year. The Lakers are already in a tough spot, money-wise, as they’ve committed plenty of cash to the other Klutch Sports clients.
Luxury tax aside, the new CBA is made to prevent teams from stacking up three big-time contracts or more. This could have serious implications for the team down the road, not to mention the fact that they would have to give up plenty of depth to get him.
Lack Of Maturity
Zach LaVine has had several outbursts during his days in the Windy City, and LA media is brutal. He’s going to be under the scope in every single game, and he’s going to be a talking point every single time he underperforms. Will he be able to handle that?
On top of that, he’s been used to being the primary scorer. He showed that he could coexist with another scoring and ball-dominant player. But what if he’s stuck in the corner as the third-best player on a team? Will he be able to deal with that?
Is He A Winner?
LaVine doesn’t play defense, and while he’s one of the most athletic players in the league, he’s no longer relying on his hops and speed as much as he used to. So, his jump-shot-heavy game has rarely translated into winning basketball.
LaVine has failed to be a leader and take his team to the playoffs. He’s an empty-stat kind of guy, and the stat sheet doesn’t usually resemble the actual impact he has on a game. That’s not what you want as LeBron heads towards the finish line.
Planning For The Future
On that same note, what do you make of this Lakers team down the line? LaVine does have some good years left in him, and he’ll be 32 by the time he becomes an unrestricted free agent, so the Lakers could make the most of his prime years.
Then again, acquiring him would require giving up on the Lakers’ young players and draft picks. That could be worth it for a bonafide star player who could undeniably carry the torch once Anthony Davis and LeBron James are no longer able to lead the way, and for all the reasons we’ve already discussed, Zach LaVine is far from that guy.