The Sacramento Kings and Los Angeles Lakers are working on a trade that would send Rudy Gay to the latter for Jordan Clarkson and Lou Williams, according to latest NBA trade rumors.
According to sources, the Lakers initially offered Roy Hibbert since the salaries match perfectly to pull off a deal for Gay. However, the Kings have a crowded front court with all-star DeMarcus Cousins, rookie Willie Cauley-Stein and solid back-up Kosta Koufus.
The Kings could, however, benefit from the inclusion of Williams and Clarkson – who currently form the starting backcourt for the Purple & Gold. With D’Angelo Russell showing rapid signs of improvement, the Lakers have a set point guard for the future. Therefore, they are not opposed to the idea of sacrificing Clarkson and Williams – who at 29 is already past his prime.
Kings want to keep McLemore…
The Lakers could ask Ben McLemore to be included in the deal. However, Kings coach George Karl is a big supporter of the Kansas product and won’t be willing to part with him. Lakers are also willing to add swingman Nick Young to the deal.
David Murphy of Bleacher Report felt that the Lakers should target Gay and McLemore as part of their rebuilding process. “Sacto would be gearing up for their playoff push and giving up on McLemore, but he’s exactly the type of prospect the Lakers should be looking at right now rather than giving too many minutes to veterans,” wrote Bleacher Report. “Meanwhile, Gay is the type of free agent L.A. would probably have to sign in the offseason anyway, and he’s a more complete player than (Nick) Young or (Louis) Williams.”
Gay has been linked with the Lakers for a long time. With Sacramento almost certain to offload him before the trade deadline, it makes sense for both parties to pull off the move. Also, Lakers are short-staffed at the wing position with Kobe Bryant forced to play small forward this season.
Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak recently acknowledged that teams are looking to pry away their young stars (Clarkson, Russell and Julius Randle). However, he wants to stay firm and look at trading the veterans, namely Williams, Young and Hibbert. “Most of the teams that would have interest in our players would have interest in our young players and we covet our young players pretty highly right now. So it would be tough for us to move a young player.”
During the off-season, the Kings demanded Randle and Russell for Cousins. However, Lakers took a firm stance and were unwilling to give away their future stars.
According to a NBA Trade Machine scenario, the Kings and Lakers could work out a deal that would send Rudy Gay, Kosta Koufus and Ben McLemore to Lakers in exchange for Roy Hibbert, Louis Williams and Larry Nance Jr. On paper, the deal sounds like a good one for both teams.
Stay tuned for more NBA trade rumors.