Report: Lakers acquire Wizards’ Rui Hachimura for Kendrick Nunn, three picks

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Report: Lakers acquire Rui Hachimura for Kendrick Nunn, three picks originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

The first domino of NBA trade season has fallen in Los Angeles.

The Lakers are acquiring forward Rui Hachimura from the Washington Wizards, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania. In exchange, Los Angeles reportedly will send guard Kendrick Nunn and three second-round draft picks to Washington.

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Washington selected Hachimura with the ninth overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft. He earned second-team All-Rookie honors in 2019-20 and is averaging 13.0 points, 4.3 rebounds and 1.2 assists per game this season. On Saturday, he tied a career-high with 30 points in a victory over the Orlando Magic.

Hachimura is still playing on his rookie contract of four years at just over $20 million and will be a restricted free agent after the season. With Bradley Beal, Kristaps Porzingis and potentially Kyle Kuzma taking up a majority of the Wizards’ cap space, Hachimura’s time in the nation’s capital appeared to be nearing an end.

On the Lakers’ side, much has been made about their 2027 and 2029 first-round picks and whether the team would use them to bring in reinforcements alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis. The organization sent three first-round picks and a pick swap – on top of Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball and Josh Hart – to the New Orleans Pelicans in 2019 to reel in Davis. They also traded a first-round pick, Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Montrezl Harrell to the Wizards in 2021 to acquire Russell Westbrook, leaving 2027 and 2029 as the only first-round picks at their disposal for trades right now.

With the reported Hachimura deal, the Lakers get to hold onto the 2027 and 2029 firsts, which they can either hang onto or use in another trade before the NBA trade deadline on Feb. 9.

The Lakers are currently sitting outside the Western Conference play-in picture. Their 22-25 record puts them 12th in the West, though they are just one game back of ninth and 2.5 games back of fifth.

The Wizards are also 12th in their conference. Back-to-back wins have brought the team to 20-26 on the year, putting them 1.5 games out of the East’s final play-in spot.