The Los Angeles Lakers traded Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball, Josh Hart and three first-round picks to the New Orleans Pelicans for Anthony Davis. Davis had one year left on his contract with the Pelicans when the Lakers made the trade.
The pairing of Davis and superstar LeBron James turned the Lakers into immediate contenders. Davis will be eligible for max contract extension with the Lakers, cementing him and James as a dangerous duo for the rest of James’ tenure with the team.
Although, in a recent interview, Davis kept his options open for next summer. “I mean, (this is) definitely hometown,” Davis told the Chicago Tribune. “If the opportunity ever presents itself and when that time comes, I’d definitely consider it.”
With all the young assets and draft picks the Lakers gave up for Davis, comments like these must make them nervous. If the Lakers lose Davis next summer, what is the purpose of keeping James? Does the Davis comments open up potential trade talks if the season isn’t going as planned around the trade deadline?
Amidst all this uncertainty, the Lakers need to keep a close eye on the Bulls roster. If they begin to make moves to clear up cap space, then clearly they’re confident in the ability to land Davis. The Lakers also need to keep in mind that Davis is a client of Klutch Sports, the same agency that represents James.
Klutch Sports and James have a history of maintaining an open attitude about the future and never giving power to management or the organization. If Davis can keep remaining uncertain, this provokes the Lakers management to be aggressive with trades and signings for overall relevance in the championship race. Look for Davis to potentially sign a one-and-one contract next off-season to keep his options open and management on their toes, a strategy James used during his career.