Here’s How The Hornets Could Trade For Lakers’ Anthony Davis

Anthony Davis, Los Angeles Lakers, Charlotte Hornets, NBA Trade Rumors
NBA Analysis Network

The Los Angeles Lakers have already begun making some changes despite their 2021-22 NBA season not even being over for 24 hours.

Head coach Frank Vogel was fired nearly immediately after the season finale, a move that has been rumored to be occurring for months. He lasted three seasons on the job, guiding the team to the NBA Championship in the Orlando Bubble in 2020.

The coaching staff is unlikely to be the only thing seeing an overhaul this offseason. There is a chance that moves are made in the front office with Rob Pelinka coming under fire for the Russell Westbrook acquisition. Westbrook is one of many players who may be part of the roster upheaval as well.

The roster has concerns currently and heading into the future. The team didn’t even qualify for the Play-In Tournament, which speaks volumes about where they are currently. But, the future is just as bleak, as the team is lacking draft capital and building blocks on the roster.

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One player that could change the outlook is Anthony Davis. Davis just turned 29-years old, so he is in the prime of his career. He has a lengthy injury history, but when he is on the court, he remains one of the most dominant players on both ends of the court in the league.

He can still be the face of the franchise when LeBron James eventually rides off into the sunset, but there may not be much around him. The Los Angeles Lakers would assuredly like to run things back with Anthony Davis and LeBron James next season, but there is a chance that they could look to swing a blockbuster deal involving Davis to improve the future outlook of the team.

While many people want to see Westbrook on the move, he isn’t going to provide much value back. Davis, however, would bring back a significant trade package. While the Lakers might not get back as much as they traded away for him, they would certainly be able to recoup some of those assets.

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One team that could make a run at Davis is the Charlotte Hornets. They are looking to move up the ranks in the Eastern Conference, as they took a step forward this season, going 43-39. It is their first winning season since the 2015-16 season but they still landed in the 10th spot in the Eastern Conference.

If they want to change that, bringing in high-end talent such as Anthony Davis would be a step in the right direction. But, to acquire Davis, would be costly. However, there is likely a deal to be reached between the two sides.

For starters, Charlotte would trade a 2022 first-round pick via the New Orleans Pelicans and a 2024 first-round pick to Los Angeles with a pick swap in 2023. P.J. Washington and James Bouknight are solid, young players to start the package with as well. Los Angeles can ask about restricted free agent Miles Bridges, but will likely be turned down.

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After that, it will be about matching salaries. Charlotte may push to include Gordon Hayward’s contract, but the Lakers will likely push back against that unless even more draft capital is included. If the Charlotte Hornets want to get off a long-term, big-money deal, Los Angeles should ask for Terry Rozier, who can fill the void at point guard while offering excellent shooting and defense alongside LeBron James.

If the Los Angeles Lakers want to break it up into even more pieces to build out the rotation, they can ask for Kelly Oubre Jr. and Mason Plumlee, whose contracts add up to just a little more than Rozier’s.

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The Charlotte Hornets would be sacrificing a lot of depth in that scenario, but a starting five of LaMelo Ball, Rozier, Hayward, Bridges and Anthony Davis would possess a very high ceiling. That is a group veteran free agents would want to join to make a playoff push in the Eastern Conference.

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