NBA trade rumors are heating up across the entire league as the trade deadline on Thursday draws ever closer. Many keep waiting for a big blockbuster move or two to be made, but nothing huge has yet to happen. The LA Lakers are having one of the worst seasons in the history of their franchise and rumors have had them making move after move, but so far nothing. Still, one idea is floating around and one has to wonder if they’d really deal D’Angelo Russell to the Milewaukee Bucks for Jabari Parker.
It was once thought that the Lakers would never think of trading away their rookie point guard who was seen as the future of the franchise. With Kobe Bryant retiring at the end of this season, Russell could very well take on that role if he’s still with the team.
On a recent edition of The Bill Simmons Podcast, the former ESPN writer spoke of a number of trades that he’d like to see happen, but knows probably won’t. Still, some were quite interesting, especially the proposed Lakers/Bucks trade.
“Here’s my last trade. I think it’s my favorite trade of all the trades. Jabari Parker for D’Angelo Russell straight up,” said Simmons. “You can’t [come up with a reason to not like it]. You won’t be able to. It’s a great trade.”
Using ESPN’s NBA Trade Machine, the trade is one that would be successful and actually works out quite well for both teams. The salaries of the two players are very similar, and the big difference contract-wise is that Russell has one more year remaining on his than Parker.
Their numbers are quite comparable as well. Russell is averaging 12.2 points, 3.3 assists, and 3.6 rebounds-per game for the Lakers. In Milwaukee, Parker is averaging 11.3 points, 4.7 points, and 1.4 assists-per-game.
While anything could and may happen before Thursday’s NBA trade deadline, this may be nothing more than just a rumor.
According to CBS Sports, the Milwaukee Bucks are not fielding offers for Parker and have stopped listening to calls for center Greg Monroe too. This is kind of confusing since the Bucks are currently 22-32 and nowhere not really in the playoff race at all right now.
Jabari Parkers is healing nicely from the ACL surgery he had last year, and some don’t think it’s time for the Bucks to give up on his talent. Then again, D’Angelo Russell may be just as talented according to some NBA experts and feel he could lead Milwaukee without worrying about a possible lingering injury.
There is a lot of upside in both players, and the teams can’t really lose in this trade, but could very well benefit.
D’Angelo Russell would no longer have to play for Byron Scott, and it’s well known that relationship isn’t too great. In Milwaukee, a lot of the pressure would also not be on Russell’s shoulders and he could do things more his way and with more freedom.
In Los Angeles, Jabari Parker would honestly be a centerpiece of the franchise and the focus player for the Lakers. That is especially true after Bryant retires and he steps up to lead a team that will virtually be rebuilding from the ground up.
Don’t expect the Milwaukee Bucks or LA Lakers to give up such a recent high draft selection even if it does mean upgrading both squads. The NBA trade rumors are swirling in every direction right now and the deadline is only causing more speculation, but if this trade ends up happening then it will likely shock a lot of people.
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