6. Vlade Divac
The Lakers drafted a future Hall of Famer with the 26th overall pick in the 1989 draft. Divac played off the bench in his rookie season before primarily being LA’s starting center for the next six years. He was the defensive anchor of the 1991 squad that lost to Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls in the NBA Finals.
During his time with the Lakers, Divac averaged 12.2 points, 8.5 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 1.2 steals, and 1.6 blocks in 29.0 minutes per game.
The Lakers traded the 7’1 big man to the Charlotte Hornets in 1996 for the draft rights to Kobe Bryant. They regretted that trade for exactly zero seconds, but Divac was in the middle of his prime and had two productive years in Charlotte before heading to the Sacramento Kings in free agency.
Lakers fans remember Divac being a thorn in their sides in Sacramento. His flopping made life difficult on Shaq, and the Kings nearly upset LA in the 2002 Western Conference Finals in one of the greatest postseason series in NBA history. Divac became an All-Star in Sacramento, and he remained a productive role player into his mid-30s.
Vlade Divac returned to the Lakers in 2004 for his final NBA season. Los Angeles originally moved on from the 7’1 big man as they signed Shaq. It was a wise move, but they still missed out on eight productive years from the Hall of Famer.