The Los Angeles Lakers are an iconic brand. Their 17 championships speak for themselves and everyone tunes in to watch their games. The Lakers are known for their star power and titles, but they do not always make the wisest decisions.
From failed draft picks to disastrous trades to signings that do not work out, the Lakers have made several mistakes over the years. Sometimes, NBA teams let a player go before he ever steps on the floor. Draft night trades after not finalized until after the event, so teams select for each other. Players can get rerouted in deals and end up having the briefest of stays in a city.
The Lakers are no strangers to shuffling their roster and some talented players ended up calling Los Angeles home for as long as it takes to snap your fingers. These Lakers never played a single minute on the floor.
9. Isaiah Jackson
The Lakers technically drafted the 6’10 big man at 22nd overall in 2021, but he was officially traded in a massive five-team deal one week later. Los Angeles moved Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Kyle Kuzma, Montrezl Harrell, and the first-round pick to get Russell Westbrook and two second-rounders. Jackson wound up in Indiana as the Nets and Spurs joined the Lakers and Wizards in the deal.
The 6’10 big man has proven to be a strong shot-blocker in his first two seasons but has not played more than 16.5 minutes per game. The 21-year-old could be a starter on a contending team in his prime.
The Los Angeles Lakers did not want a young big man to develop around LeBron James, despite their constant search for centers. They instead traded the first-round pick for the star power of Westbrook. The trade has already been ruled a disaster and will look even worse if Jackson continues to improve. He could have been a Laker, but it was not meant to be.