December 2, 2023

The Lakers and Nets have reportedly been actively involved in Keri IrvingRussell Westbrook business talks.

But Los Angeles doesn’t want to look so desperate.

Adrian Wojnarowski from ESPN:

I’ve been told the Lakers haven’t yet been aggressive in trying to strike a deal to get him from Brooklyn. That may come. This may develop over time. But so far, there is no real impact on deals with Irving or Kevin Durant.

If they don’t aggressively try to complete the Irving Westbrook trade-off, the Lakers fail the job.

Irving will be a big upgrade over Westbrook in both current and fit capacity LeBron James And the Anthony Davis. Although more dependable than Irving, Westbrook proved he wouldn’t help the Lakers win big during the LeBron prime.

LeBron is 37. The Lakers shouldn’t waste time seeking a promotion. Even if you’re willing to wait until Irving becomes a free agent outside next season, Los Angles are still far from having a lot of space.

The Lakers should be grateful that Kevin Durant’s trade order opened the door for Brooklyn to trade Irving for Westbrook Plus picks. If the Nets have one more reason to worry about next season, there may never be a player who can unlock the upside in Los Angles like Irving. But it does require the Lakers to make choices to tempt Brooklyn.

However, the Nets are in no rush to trade with Irving. They can send it to another place. If that happens, the Lakers don’t want to be seen as putting too much pressure on Westbrook. Their plan was to show their commitment to Westbrook and get him to buy. With Los Angeles stuck in a bind, this isn’t the worst way forward.

Unless the Lakers can get Irving.

Which they should try hard to do.

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