Lakers Have 2 Top Offseason Targets, Including Kyrie Irving

Kyrie Irving, Los Angeles Lakers, Dallas Mavericks, NBA Trade Rumors
NBA Analysis Network

NBA insider Shams Charania believes the Los Angeles Lakers have to target Kyrie Irving and Fred VanVleet this summer.

Irving becomes an unrestricted free agent this offseason, while VanVleet can become an unrestricted free agent if he declines his 2023-24 player option with the Toronto Raptors.

“I think Kyrie Irving and Fred VanVleet have to be at the top of the list for the Lakers this offseason,” Shams Charania of The Athletic said.

Irving has been heavily linked to the Lakers. The Dallas Mavericks point guard played with LeBron James on the Cleveland Cavaliers for three years and has a rapport with Anthony Davis and Lakers assistant coach Phil Handy.

Los Angeles aggressively tried to trade for Irving after Uncle Drew requested a trade from the Brooklyn Nets this season. However, the Mavericks got Irving, and James wasn’t happy that Los Angeles didn’t find a way to acquire his former teammate.

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Kyrie Irving, Fred VanVleet & Los Angeles Lakers Updates

Irving averaged 27.1 points, 5.1 rebounds and 5.5 assists for the Nets and Mavericks this season while shooting 49.4% from the field, 37.9% from beyond the arc, and 90.5% from the free-throw line. The eight-time All-Star won the 2016 championship with James on the Cavaliers over the Golden State Warriors in seven games.

Meanwhile, VanVleet has been linked to the Lakers, Orlando Magic, and Phoenix Suns. The Raptors fired head coach Nick Nurse after their season ended and there has been talk in league circles that the franchise could enter rebuild mode.

VanVleet, who is an undrafted player, averaged 19.3 points, 4.1 rebounds and 7.2 assists for the Raptors in 2022-23. The one-time All-Star and one-time NBA champion shot 39.3% overall, 34.2% from 3, and 89.8% from the free-throw line.

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Kyrie Irving, Fred VanVleet & Los Angeles Lakers Updates

D’Angelo Russell becomes an unrestricted free agent this summer and there is word that the Lakers may not re-sign the All-Star since he didn’t play well in the Western Conference Finals versus the Denver Nuggets. D’Lo averaged only 6.3 points and 3.5 assists while shooting 32.3% from the floor and 13.3% from 3-point range.

If Los Angeles moves on from Russell, it will be interesting to see who the Lakers sign to replace him.

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