The Los Angeles Lakers are eager to make an impact before the trade deadline. The team is currently neck and neck with the Phoenix Suns for the last place in the Western Conference. Laker fans, who have been spoiled by numerous championships over the decades, are growing quite impatient. The Lakers have been mired in consecutive seasons scraping the bottom of the NBA.
Plus, the heads of the Los Angeles Lakers are facing some incredible pressure. According to Yahoo, Jeanie Buss said that his brother plans to keep his promise from three years ago of stepping down from the basketball side of things if the Lakers are not competing for a championship. Well, that time is about to pass and the Lakers are in no way competing for a title.
The only way that Jim Buss can save face is to try and make a big splash in the second half of the season. This way, he can assure the Lakers faithful that they will have a great 2017-2018 season to look forward to. However, the Lakers are not in line to make a huge swap with big names like Carmelo Anthony and DeMarcus Cousins. Anthony has a no-trade clause and is only willing to waive that for a couple of teams while Cousins and the Kings seem to be getting along fine as of now.
Fortunately, there are other good options for the Lakers before the trade deadline. According to Fansided, the Lakers could make a trade for Serge Ibaka, who is rumored to be available for the right price. Serge Ibaka is a very versatile power forward who could provide the relatively young Lakers new looks both on offense and defense.
It might be weird for the Lakers to grab Ibaka since they already have Julius Randle. However, Ibaka’s versatility and ability to switch between center and power forward might just make him the perfect front court with Randle.
Ibaka will shine on defense for the Lakers best. His ability to protect the rim is still one of the NBA’s best. But what is truly remarkable with Ibaka is his ability to guard faster wings, which will be a huge asset for the Lakers. Ibaka and Randle can both switch from power forward to center depending on what the situation for the Lakers calls for.
Serge Ibaka is also a good perimeter scorer and has a knock-down jump shot. This is particularly useful for the Los Angeles Lakers as they need more bigs who can space the floor for D’Angelo Russell. Russell on the attack while Serge Ibaka lures the opposing center or powerful forward to the perimeter is a pretty dangerous weapon for the Lakers.
Serge Ibaka’s impact will not turn the Lakers into instant championship contenders. But it will certainly make the fans see that their team is serious about contending. This move could end up Jim Buss’s job at the Lakers basketball department as he is most likely going to be the scapegoat to appease the fans.
According to the same source, the trade will work if the Lakers send Luol Deng, Lou Williams, Jose Calderon, Nick Young, and a second-round pick to get Ibaka, D.J Augustine, and Super Mario Hezonja. This certainly looks like a great deal for the Lakers who will be getting a good versatile player in Ibaka, while also grabbing a high potential offensive player in Mario Hezonja. DJ Augustine would certainly make a great addition as a back-up to the young D’Angelo Russell.
Serge Ibaka to the Lakers will certainly form a formidable roster to a young and talented Lakers roster. The Lakers could finally be back in the mix of things out West by next year.
[Featured Image by Jim Mone/AP Images]