Paul Millsap, the Atlanta Hawks forward, has been rumored to be on the trading block for several months, and it seems like the Los Angeles Lakers could be interested in acquiring the all-star.
According to Hawks fan site Soaring Down South, Atlanta’s front office could be intrigued with the possibility of acquiring Lakers power forward Julius Randle among other young assets in a trade for Millsap.
“The Lakers will genuinely offer any one of Julius Randle, Jordan Clarkson, D’Angelo Russell, Larry Nance Jr. and perhaps even Brandon Ingram in a potential Millsap deal between now and then,” the writer speculated.
The website added that Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer would be excited to work with one of the young Lakers players. “To gain those type of young players coach Budenholzer could develop them into the type of star players that we all crave for.”
Paul Millsap for Julius Randle?
According to ESPN’s trade machine, a package of Randle, Nick Young and Lou Williams should be enough for the Lakers to secure Millsap’s $20 million contract. It also helps since the Lakers have nearly $8.5 million remaining in salary cap after an unsuccessful offseason that saw them strike out in their pursuit of superstar free agents.
This should be a win-win trade for both teams. The Lakers would get an all-star to lead the locker room and possibly help the team end its three-year playoff drought. And the Hawks will get a budding young forward who has two years left on a rookie contract.
Since Millsap has only one year left on his contract, it’s a gamble for the Lakers, but it could be a gamble worth taking. One thing is for sure: The Lakers will never part with D’Angelo Russell and/or Brandon Ingram, the two players they view as the new franchise cornerstones.
Earlier this month, Today’s Fast Break reported that the Hawks were actively trying to trade Millsap seeing as the power forward will be an unrestricted free agent next summer. In such a scenario, the Hawks stand to lose Al Horford and Millsap in consecutive summers.
“Millsap’s current contract has two years left but includes a player option at the end of the upcoming season. Millsap, potentially feeling burned by a team actively trying to trade him, could test free agency and could abandon Atlanta, leaving them scrambling to find a suitable running mate alongside Howard,” David Ramil wrote last weekend, while revealing that the Hawks have been waiting for an apt offer since February’s trade deadline.
Paul Millsap averaged 17.1 points and 9 rebounds last year. He remains one of the best defensive big men in the league.