The 2022-23 NBA season will commence in just a matter of weeks, and while players and coaches are busy preparing for the new campaign, general managers and backroom staff are still busy working on a frenzy of possible trades. On the back of two hugely frustrating years, the Los Angeles Lakers are expected to make a number of moves, which could include the only Filipino citizen currently playing in the league.
Multiple trades on the table
Keeping track of recent reports around the NBA, Bleacher Report is monitoring news the Lakers are in talks for three Utah Jazz players, as both franchises aim to make significant roster changes. This could also provide an opportunity for the Lakers to offload Russell Westbrook, although even if the drama surrounding his future persists, they still seem keen to bring in a trio of players from the Jazz, who seem destined to tank this year.
The Jazz appear willing to listen to what the Lakers can offer for Bojan Bogdanovic, Malik Beasley, and Jordan Clarkson. But just as importantly, the Los Angeles franchise appear to have set their stall out to bring in the trio, especially if they can ship Westbrook in the opposite direction to Utah. Nevertheless, these won’t be simple negotiations by any stretch of the imagination.
Apparently, the Jazz are insisting on some additions to sweeten any deal that gets them Westbrook, which could include the Lakers trading their 2027 and 2029 first-round NBA Draft picks. Nevertheless, the three players the Purple and Gold would get might be just the incentive they need, as they seek to close a deal that would appear to suit all parties involved.
But if just two players of the three arrived from the Jazz, the most likely options for the Lakers to choose are forward Bogdanovic, and guard Clarkson. Both would give the Los Angeles roster additional and much needed shooting strength, while the situation for Beasley is rather more complicated, as he isn’t an entirely necessary addition. Likewise, the Lakers might be reluctant about recruiting Beasley, who pled guilty to threatening a family with a rifle in 2020.
Clarkson could help Lakers boost their odds
Heading into the 2022-23 NBA campaign, the Los Angeles Lakers find themselves way down the pecking order, when it comes to futures markets focusing on championship candidates. Indeed, with the large majority of online sportsbooks, they only just make it into the top ten contenders, when comparing odds for the title favourites.
This arguably underlines how much the Lakers need to strengthen the roster, which adds further credence to the talk surrounding a possible swoop for the trio from Utah Jazz, providing the two franchises can reach agreements. From a business perspective Jordan Clarkson might be the most interesting of the three, due to his Asian heritage and their fanbase, along with having already spent some time at the franchise in the past.
Basketball is phenomenally popular in the Philippines, and given one of their national team players is making positive waves in the NBA, there will undoubtedly be increased interest should a trade back to the Lakers happen for Clarkson. This will also encourage eager fans to find the best betting sites in the Philippines, backed by the latest guides and reviews via SBO, recommending only trusted and fully licensed sources.
Clarkson also won the NBA Sixth Man of the Year award for the 2020-21 season, voted for in recognition of being the league’s best performing player, when coming off the bench as a substitute. The 30-year-old is also arguably at the very peak of his basketball career, although following three seasons with the Cleveland Cavaliers and three more with the Utah Jazz, the opportunity for a return to the LA Lakers is one he is unlikely to refuse.
Can the Lakers bounce back?
On the back of winning the 2019-20 championship, beating Miami Heat 4-2 over the NBA Finals series, being eliminated in the First Round of the 2020-21 NBA Playoffs was frustrating enough. But after slumping completely through the 2021-22 regular season campaign, and failing to even make the Playoffs, that was well below expectations for the Lakers. Key trades are needed in the coming weeks, if the 2022-23 season is to be a success.