Lakers ‘Remain Aggressive’ In Pursuit Of Anthony David Trade; Pelicans 'Not In A Hurry' To Strike Deal
New Orleans superstar Anthony Davis is now one of the subjects of NBA Draft rumors, who according to reports already has some preferred trade destinations. According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Davis' is off to either the Los Angeles Lakers or the New York Knicks.
ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski added fuel to the fire when he told SportsCenter that the Lakers are "the leader in the clubhouse" for Davis' services and LA wants to get a deal done as soon as this coming weekend:
"(The Pelicans) would like to get a deal done well before next Thursday's draft. New Orleans is engaged with several teams right now. The Lakers remain aggressive in here in trying to get a deal done."
On the surface, this may seem like a comment that's obvious, but it goes beyond that. The Lakers have chased the Pelicans in their pursuit of a trade for Davis since earlier in the season, and many believe the team can put together the best package for the star forward. But it appears they are now more than willing to use their draft pick and add another talented young piece or include that selection in another potential deal if talks don't ramp up.
The Pelicans would like to get a deal done prior to the 2019 NBA Draft, which is set for Thursday, June 20, and the Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, and New York Knicks are among that teams that have inquired about a potential Davis deal, per Wojnarowski.
Despite reports that imply urgency, however, the Pelicans aren't in any sort of rush to move Davis, according to David Griffin.
Even if the two teams agree to a trade by this weekend, in all likelihood the deal won't be consummated until after the draft in order for Los Angeles to save as much cap space as possible. The recent Nets-Hawks deal (the Allen Crabbe salary dump) that was announced June 6 also won't be technically completed until after the start of the next league year.
Where Davis ends up is arguably the biggest storyline of the upcoming offseason, right there with where Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, and Kawhi Leonard decide to sign as free agents. There's a chance Davis could hook up with one of those three, perhaps with the Knicks or the Lakers, as both teams have the assets to at least entice New Orleans with a trade offer while also having the cap space to sign a max free agent.