6 Conference Finals players Lakers should pursue from least to most likely

The Los Angeles Lakers may not be in the 2024 Conference Finals, but that doesn't mean they can't find a potential piece on one of the teams that is.
Chicago Bulls v Indiana Pacers
Chicago Bulls v Indiana Pacers / Justin Casterline/GettyImages
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The 2024 NBA Conference Finals are underway and the Los Angeles Lakers are going to have their eyes on every player that sees the court. With a championship in reach, the Boston Celtics, Dallas Mavericks, Indiana Pacers, and Minnesota Timberwolves are all expecting career-defining performances from the players on their respective rosters.

The Lakers, meanwhile, will be evaluating potential fits via trade and free agency on one of the grandest stages in basketball.

In the spirit of being realistic, the players the Lakers will be eyeing are unlikely to be superstars such as Luka Doncic, Anthony Edwards, Tyrese Haliburton, or Jayson Tatum. Instead, the franchise will likely be looking at pending free agents who could be acquired outright or via a sign-and-trade.

That all begins with a Pacer who has become something of a super-sub for a team that has defied all odds to reach the Eastern Conference Finals.

6. Kyle Anderson, Minnesota Timberwolves

10 years after his lack of elite athleticism led to a drop to No. 30 overall in the 2014 NBA Draft, Kyle Anderson is still playing. In fact, Anderson averaged 22.6 minutes per game on a 56-win Minnesota Timberwolves team that is now in the Western Conference Finals.

For as commendable of a feat as that is, however, Anderson enters the Conference Finals as a player who may have fallen off of the Los Angeles Lakers' radar.

Anderson is regarded as a quality defender whose size and passing ability make him a unique asset in the modern NBA. Unfortunately, as a career 33.8 percent three-point shooter, Anderson is also a player who doesn't quite fit Los Angeles' need for improved three-point shooting

That's played a role in the Timberwolves' rotations this postseason, as Anderson's minutes have been virtually cut in half.

The Lakers are planning beyond this season, but there's a sense of urgency to win while LeBron James is still playing at an exceptionally high level. As such, signing Anderson when the fit is less than ideal may be too much of a risk.

If Anderson, who did shoot 41.0 percent from three-point range in 2022-23, steps up in the Western Conference Finals, perhaps the conversation could change. A strong Game 1 showing certainly offers reason for intrigue.