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#pounditTuesday, June 18, 2024

Report: 2-time All-Star wants to be traded to Lakers

The Lakers logo at half court

Apr 22, 2023; Los Angeles, California, USA; The Los Angeles Lakers logo at center court during game three of the 2023 NBA playoffs at Crypto.com Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers are expected to be active on the trade market in the coming weeks, and there is at least one star player who is hoping the team makes a push to acquire him.

Chicago Bulls swingman Zach LaVine has been the subject of trade rumors dating back to last season. According to Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times, the 2-time All-Star is hoping to be traded to the Lakers.

LaVine is represented by Rich Paul of Klutch Sports, so it is hardly a surprise that he would want to play in L.A.

The question is whether the interest is mutual. LaVine signed a 5-year, $215 million contract with the Bulls last year. His salary for this season is $40 million. A recent report indicated that there is not much of a trade market for LaVine because he is paid like a superstar but not viewed as a true game-changer.

LaVine has also been linked to the Toronto Raptors, Miami Heat and Philadelphia 76ers. One issue is that the team that acquires LaVine would have to match salaries. Lakers guard D’Angelo Russell is making $17.3 million this season, so he could potentially help facilitate a deal.

LaVine is averaging 21.0 points and 4.9 rebounds per game this season. The Lakers would not need him to do much heavy lifting, but they have to believe LaVine could be a difference-maker in order to justify taking on his massive contract.

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