Los Angeles Lakers Trade Rumors: Would Lakers Really Trade First-Round Draft Pick?

Los Angeles Lakers trade rumors indicate a willingness to deal their 2015 NBA Draft picks. A Lakers trade of the No. 2 overall selection seems far-fetched, but it was general manager Mitch Kupchak that has now put that thought into the minds of fans. It would have to be a really good trade package for the Lakers to give up that first-round draft pick, but it is equally interesting that the team would consider it. It was NBA writer Sean Deveney who passed on what he heard from the Lakers’ GM.

In the latest NBA mock draft from Sports Illustrated, NBA analyst Chris Manny has the Los Angeles Lakers selecting Duke center Jahlil Okafor with the second pick. He would certainly be a good addition to a team that has power forward Julius Randle and Kobe Bryant as its core players. With money to spend in free agency, the Lakers could likely add another star player as well. That seems like a recipe for success, but maybe Kupchak wants to see if another franchise is willing to gut itself to move up in the 2015 NBA Draft order.

Jahlil Okafor played one season for Duke, helping the team become the NCAA champions in 2015. He was named the ACC Player of the Year and became a consensus first-team All-American. During just 30.1 minutes a game, Okafor averaged 17.3 points, 8.5 rebounds, and 1.4 blocks per game. Okafor also shot 66.4 percent from the field, but struggled at the free throw line, posting a 51 percent clip from there.

As previously reported on the Inquisitr, 2014 first-round pick Julius Randle broke his leg in his first NBA game. Randle missed the entire season for the Los Angeles Lakers, putting the team in a bad position almost immediately. Adding to the loss of their lottery pick were new injuries to Kobe Bryant and Steve Nash that took both guards out of the daily lineup. This left the Lakers scrambling to put a good team on the court and it caused the team to post one of the worst records in the NBA. That record helped them secure the second pick of the 2015 NBA Draft, though, giving fans something to look forward to.

While it is clear that the team has a lot of work to do this offseason, having a high pick in the NBA Draft and a lot of money to spend in free agency could help them out a lot. These Los Angeles Lakers trade rumors could just be Mitch Kupchak testing out the market, because Jahlil Okafor could help set the team up for when Kobe Bryant retires. A future that includes Okafor and Julius Randle is one that most NBA teams would enjoy having.

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