How Lakers Could Make Bold Trade For Spurs’ Josh Richardson

Josh Richardson, Lakers, Spurs, NBA Rumors
NBA Analysis Network

The Los Angeles Lakers are a team everyone expects to make some sort of trade between now and the trade deadline on February 9th. They are currently on the outside looking in of the NBA Play-In Tournament as LeBron James is doing everything he can to help keep the team afloat while Anthony Davis recovers from his foot injury. Another team to watch could be the San Antonio Spurs, who have plenty of veterans to trade.

As currently constructed, this likely isn’t a roster that will compete for a championship. You cannot count out the duo of James and Davis, but their supporting cast is certainly lacking. Upgrading the role players around them will be easier said than done.

Los Angeles is lacking assets to compete on the trade market against other clubs vying for the same players. Their first-round picks in 2027 and 2029 are what other franchises covet, but to this point, the Lakers have not made them available in a trade.

While the options are limited, Rob Pelinka will do his best to make something work. One trade suggested by ESPN would be the Lakers sending Patrick Beverley and the Chicago Bulls’ 2023 second-round pick to the San Antonio Spurs in exchange for Josh Richardson.

Currently, this seems like the best-case scenario for the Lakers. San Antonio has set a firm price on their veterans as they are seeking at least a first-round pick in exchange for Richardson and reportedly two for Jakob Poeltl. If the price on Richardson drops and all it would take is the expiring contract of Beverley and a second-round pick, the Lakers have to jump on that.

Richardson would be a massive upgrade on the wing. He is a reliable 3-point shooter, which is an area the team has struggled as they are making only 33.8 percent of their 3-point attempts. This season, Richardson is connecting on 35.9 percent of his attempts from long-range and in his career is a 36.5 percent shooter.

The eight-year NBA veteran also brings the kind of defensive ability on the wing that the purple and gold could use more of. Richardson has the versatility to defend multiple positions, as he is capable of matching up against either backcourt spot or wings. 

While Davis has been clear that he prefers playing power forward, the Lakers are at their best when he plays the center position. Acquiring Josh Richardson from the Spurs would provide head coach Darvin Ham with another option for small ball lineups to take advantage of Davis playing the middle.

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