Saturday, August 13, 2022

Lakers not expected to make push for Patrick Beverley trade with Talen Horton-Tucker, per report

Patrick Beverley is exactly the sort of veteran the Los Angeles Lakers should be targeting. He’d immediately become the team’s best perimeter defender. At 37.8 percent from behind the arc, he would also have the highest career 3-point percentage on the roster. He’s 34 years old, and while the Lakers have emphasized youth this offseason, that makes him available at a reasonable price. He was sent to the Utah Jazz as cap filler in the Rudy Gobert blockbuster.

Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer reported that the Lakers (and Miami Heat) are interested in acquiring Beverley, but Marc Stein noted that “there is no push forthcoming from the Lakers’ side to swap Talen Horton-Tucker (as rumored) for Patrick Beverley.” In other words, the Lakers may want Beverley, but they aren’t prepared to give up Horton-Tucker, specifically, for him.

This is a somewhat common refrain from a Lakers front office that has consistently appeared unwilling to sacrifice value to add good players. Obviously, if you want to get something good from another team, you have to be willing to give something up. Yet the Lakers have thus far reportedly refused to sacrifice a future first-round pick in a Russell Westbrook trade unless Kyrie Irving is involved, and even then, they’ve seemingly capped their offer at a single pick.

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They’ve clung to Horton-Tucker, specifically, for years despite getting little production out of him. There were rumors of a possible Kyle Lowry deal at the 2021 deadline, but the Lakers ultimately decided that they were unwilling to surrender their young guard. He has remained on the roster since despite his poor fit with Westbrook. 

Further complicating matters is that Horton-Tucker is one of the very few ways the Lakers have of adding salary in a trade. Aside from Westbrook, LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the Lakers have just three players making more than the minimum. Lonnie Walker IV is not tradable until December. Kendrick Nunn’s $5 million salary won’t fetch much. But Horton-Tucker, at $10.3 million, could bring in a contributor like Beverley.

But the Lakers disagree. If they are scared of Beverley’s injury history and age, that’s reasonable. But sooner or later this team is going to have to face the facts that teams aren’t going to do them favors on the trade market. They aren’t going to get anything helpful if they aren’t willing to sacrifice what little they have.

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