Although the Los Angeles Lakers have won six of their last eight games, everyone knows they need to make a significant move or two to maximize LeBron James’ narrowing championship window.
They have been reluctant to give up their 2027 and 2029 first-round draft picks unless it would be for a package that would make them contenders again, which may be a reasonable stipulation.
One rumored target for Los Angeles has been sharpshooter Bojan Bogdanovic, who is playing some of the best ball of his life this season for the Detroit Pistons.
According to Marc Stein, the Lakers apparently said no to a package that would’ve had them surrender only one future first-round pick, along with Kendrick Nunn and Patrick Beverley.
“There has been little — yet — to indicate that the Lakers’ approach will change,” Stein wrote. “They decided in the offseason that packaging both of their available first-round picks in 2027 and 2029 is too steep a price to pay to trade for the Indiana duo of Myles Turner and Buddy Hield. And they also decided that trading one of those picks with no draft protections attached (along with the expiring contracts of Patrick Beverley and Kendrick Nunn) was too high a price for Detroit’s Bojan Bogdanović. A case can be made that the Lakers should take the one-pick plunge for a better-than-ever Bogdanović — maybe even if the Pistons refuse to lower their price — given the promising form they’ve displayed in 2023 without the injured Anthony Davis to work their way back into the West’s play-in mix. The question, however, remains: How much would Bogdanović, as well as he’s playing, really raise this team’s ceiling?”
Could it be that the Lakers’ objection was the lack of protection on the pick Detroit wanted?
Trading for Bogdanovic could be the best move they can make, at least of the ones that have been rumored. Some would say the package of Myles Turner and Buddy Hield from the Indiana Pacers would yield better results, but such a package would reportedly cost two first-round draft picks, plus Russell Westbrook, whom the Lakers are suddenly reluctant to trade.
James has made it clear he doesn’t care about those future picks; he simply wants to win another championship. But does the team’s front office feel the same urgency?