The Los Angeles Lakers are rumored to be making some big moves this summer, targeting superstars Rajon Rondo and Kevin Love as part of a massive roster overhaul coinciding with what’s likely Kobe Bryant’s last season.
Reports indicate that the Lakers are working on a series of offseason moves that would take the bottom dweller back to title contention in time for Bryant’s last season. While sources close to the team had already indicated that Rajon Rondo was a likely summer target, the move to acquire Kevin Love is a more recent revelation.
Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders noted, “So real money, let’s peg the Lakers at $22.1 million to play with, that’s enough for one serious max contract to an established veteran like [Greg] Monroe, Rondo or Love – and all three are said to be willing to meet with the Lakers this summer.”
Getting Kevin Love might not be easy. Though reports have indicated that the big man is considering leaving the Cleveland Cavaliers, it might be hard for him to leave LeBron James, especially if the team makes a deep run this postseason.
The offseason moves won’t entail an entire roster shakeup. There had been rumors that the Los Angeles Lakers may be looking to trade Kobe Bryant, shipping him to a title contender in exchange for prospects or draft picks, but now it’s clear that the future Hall of Famer plans to spend his final days in Los Angeles. The Showtime documentary Kobe Bryant’s MUSE revealed that Kobe doesn’t intend to play for any other team.
“If I’m not playing in a Laker uniform, I’m not playing,” Bryant said at the documentary’s premiere.
The documentary’s director, Gotham Chopra, also said he expects Kobe to be back on the Lakers, forgoing retirement for at least one more year.
“I don’t think he will ever be a guy who lets the injury sort of be the end,” Chopra told LakersNation. “He’ll get back to where he needs to be, and then he’ll decide if he wants to keep on going.”
If the Los Angeles Lakers rumors regarding Rajon Rondo and Kevin Love are true, it would seem a departure from what general manager Mitch Kupchak said last month. Kupchak made it clear that he wasn’t going to “jeopardize the next five or seven years” and bring in older veteran players to make a final run with Kobe Bryant. Those plans may now be changing.
[Image via USA Today]