Rob Pelinka Breaks Silence on Lakers’ Quiet Trade Deadline; Reveals Chat With LeBron James and Buyout Market Plans

Published 02/08/2024, 9:13 PM EST

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USA Today via Reuters

The Los Angeles Lakers threw a curveball at the league during this trade deadline. In an unexpected and contrasting approach—they chose silence over spectacle. Despite the quiet front, the most intriguing narrative that emerges from the past week is LeBron James’ resolute commitment to stay with the Lakers, a sentiment echoed by his close friend Rich Paul.

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The alignment of vision between Rob Pelinka and LeBron James for the Lakers’ future serves as a tangible sign of his commitment. James recently expressed his faith in the current roster and his determination to lead them alongside Anthony Davis. The shared approach was reaffirmed in a recent conversation between Pelinka and James, where they discussed strategies to maximize the potential of the existing lineup.

ESPN’s Dave McMenamin reported that the Lakers actively pursued deals leading up to the deadline. However, the team concluded that any potential trade would result in only a marginal upgrade, and the associated costs would be too steep. When Pelinka was enquired about the same, he responded, “You can’t buy a house that’s not for sale,” radiating that the deal Lakers desired, was never on the table.

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With that, Pelinka suggests that the return of Jarred Vanderbilt and Gabe Vincent shortly can help them acquire a “really good player” in the buyout market.

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In addition to considering roster changes, the Lakers possess three first-round draft picks for the upcoming summer. Pelinka clarified the Lakers’ position on this matter, asserting that if the right deal presents itself in an ideal manner, the franchise is willing to leverage future assets to its advantage.

Which players can the Lakers add next?

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As fans begin speculating about potential additions, the resolution of such an event is still on hold. However, there are already connections between the franchise and Spencer Dinwiddie. With the Raptors waiving him, the Lakers find themselves in a prime position to acquire the veteran. Spencer has currently been through his best statistical years, averaging over 12 points, 3 assists, and 6 rebounds.

Adding to the mix, the Detroit Pistons have waived Joe Harris. However, just 2 seasons ago, he was a sharpshooter boasting a 40% clip from three.

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The Lakers currently rank 19th in offense. Moreover, after the IST, their defense ranks at the 19th spot as well. This highlights their need for improvement in both areas. To address this, a potential addition of Mike Muscala as a backup center holds promise. While his season stats are not exceptional, he can outperform Jaxson Hayes in floor spacing.

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Additionally, Otto Porter Jr., a former Golden State Warrior, brings a potential that is still untapped. He is an intriguing prospect, with experience of performing in high-stakes situations – something Lakers often find themselves in.

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Written by:

Saahil Dhillan

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“Places you go in life – it opens your eyes up and you kind of understand who you are.” - This is my philosophy in life. I want to go to innumerable places and get inspired by the people and experiences I come across, just like Dwayne Wade.
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Edited by:

Sameen Nawathe

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