Two years ago, the Lakers had the chance to get DeMar DeRozan but opted for Russell Westbrook instead.
It seems that LA haven’t forgotten about the veteran though, and his current team Chicago are looking like they will be desperate to get some trades going at the deadline.
There have been reports that the Lakers are interested in Zach LaVine also, but many NBA insiders believe a DeRozan trade is more likely.
“I would posit this to you: The Lakers have had their eye on the Bulls since September,” ESPN’s Zach Lowe said to Ramona Shelburne on his podcast.
“Since September, the Lakers have been saying ‘We want to see what happens if that team craps the bed this season, what might shake loose.’ And you don’t have to be a brain surgeon to understand that in September, that meant DeRozan,” he said.
“The free agent who wasn’t. The free agent who almost was. And instead became Russ. The name that has become more interesting to me as the season has gone on and it’s become clearer and clearer that the Bulls are not gonna get it together is [Zach] LaVine.”
Shelburne said in response to Lowe’s sentiments: “I think the Lakers would be among several teams that would be looking at LaVine.”
“Teams that really need another playmaker, a guy who can score, a guy that’s got some oomph to his game,” Shelburne continued. “Now he’s younger, but it’s just a lot of money…
“You don’t just take on a contract like that for a one-year deal, you’re committing to $200-plus million and that’s your guy for a long time. So I generally think deals like that don’t get done at the deadline. With that much money on the deal, it’s a hard one to do in the middle of the year.”
Unlike LaVine, who signed a five-year max $215.2 million dollar contract with Bulls in July, DeRozan is in the middle of a three-year, $82 million contract worth $27.3 million this year, $28.6 million next year, and after that he is an unrestricted free agent.