The Chicago Bulls were shining in the NBA last season, posting the best record in the Eastern Conference midway through the season before a series of injuries blighted their year.
This time around, they’re 13-18 and 11th in the East, and it’s starting to become clear that the group of guys they have aren’t going to get the job done.
This led to rumors that Chicago might choose to hit the proverbial reset button, and none of their major players were immune from such rumours.
Zach LaVine, the high-flying shooting guard, supposedly wants out according to Sean Devine of Heavy.com, and he reportedly would like to be traded to the Los Angeles Lakers.
“LaVine wants to go to the Lakers, that’s been clear for a while,” the Eastern Conference executive told Daveney. agents [from Klutch Sports] I want him to be in L.A. He’s a UCLA guy and they did some arguing over his contract last season, to lay the groundwork if things blow up. Which is what they seem to be doing.”
LaVine represents Klutch Sports, the agency founded by LeBron James and his business partner, Rich Paul.
The CEO also indicated that he doesn’t think the Bulls will trade LaVine during the season, but a deal could happen this summer if that’s what the Bulls have already decided.
Lakers fans shouldn’t get their hopes up
The Bulls have made it clear that they did No interest in Russell WestbrookAnd, of course, if the Lakers attempt to trade for LaVine this summer, Westbrook wouldn’t even be an option since he’d become a free agent at that time.
The only viable option in Los Angeles would be to replace Anthony Davis with LaVine, but a lot of Lakers fans have wanted the team to get rid of Davis for a while given how susceptible he is to injury. However, the team seemed to have no real interest in even considering dropping Davis.
“The problem with LaVine is on the Lakers’ side,” the executive said, “there’s no one they can trade to Chicago but Anthony Davis.” Now, that’s a possibility—Davis is a Chicago guy and if he’s leaving the Lakers, the Bulls will be one of the few places he’ll be okay with it. The Bulls and Lakers will trade stars with injury issues, mainly. Lavin (at 27) is younger than Davis, So that’s an advantage but in full health, Davis (29) is a much better player.”
It should be noted that LaVine has not appeared in more than 68 games in a season since the 2015-16 season, his second in the NBA.
On top of that, there would be another hurdle for the Lakers — ownership of the Bulls reportedly didn’t want to help the Lakers.
Through Lakers Daily:
While there are certain business scenarios in which a Chicago Bulls star could land in Los Angeles, Bulls president Jerry Reinsdorf may not be too fond of that possibility, according to one agent.
“Not many teams would consider dealing with a player dealing with knee problems on such a huge contract,” Bleacher Report’s Eric Pincus wrote. Multiple NBA sources struggled to work out the market value given the circumstances. The same sources agreed that if there was a price no one else would pay, the Lakers might want it, though one doesn’t think the Buss family would consider this contract to be a big deal.
Of course, this speculation could easily be moot. As one agent declared,[Bulls chairperson Jerry] Reinsdorf is not helping the Lakers.”
“If LaVine wants out, Reinsdorf and the Bulls have no obligation to accommodate any request. “
It is said that there are a number of executives across the league who are not willing to help the Lakers become championship contenders again, and if that is true, they will be hard pressed to achieve the #18 banner.