Lakers trade rumors: Latest intel makes a deadline deal increasingly unlikely

Los Angeles Lakers v New York Knicks
Los Angeles Lakers v New York Knicks / Al Bello/GettyImages

We are officially in NBA trade deadline week and it has remained relatively quiet throughout the league. Outside of two big trades by the Toronto Raptors, there really has not been much movement near this year's deadline. This calmness is painful for Los Angeles Lakers fans, who just want to see their team improve at the deadline.

The Lakers have struggled for most of the 2023-24 season with many believing that the team needs some kind of jolt in order to truly contend for a championship. Los Angeles has been involved in its fair share of trade rumors but nothing has come to fruition with the deadline just days away.

Those hoping for a last-second grasp that would result in a new-look roster are going to be disappointed by the latest intel. While anything can happen in the NBA, it is hard to buy into the chances of a trade happening after Jovan Buha's latest. The Athletic's Lakers insider reported that there is only one valuable trade chip that LA has with the team still unwilling to part ways with Austin Reaves.

"There is only one Lakers asset available in a trade that rival teams truly covet: their 2029 first-round pick. Austin Reaves, whom teams continue to ask for in negotiations, remains off the table barring an All-Star becoming available. The likelihood [they] stand pat has increased [recently]."

The chances of a Lakers trade happening are dwindling

According to Buha, the only valuable asset that teams actually cover is the Lakers' 2029 first-round pick. Outside of that, Austin Reaves is the only one of value and he is someone who has been completely off the table in trade talks (even though the numbers may favor a trade).

This may be the reason why the Lakers have been inactive and why the team may ultimately stand pat at the deadline. If this report is to be believed, then there is no real value in D'Angelo Russell and/or Jalen Hood-Schifino, which are the two most likely trade assets at the deadline.

And while the 2029 first-round pick is valuable, the Lakers are only going to trade it if it absolutely makes sense. Los Angeles pushed back at trading two picks to get off Russell Westbrook and still managed to get protections on the 2027 first-round pick. Los Angeles isn't going to suddenly flip the script and trade that 2029 pick for nothing.

So unless things drastically change between now and the deadline (which is possible) then fans should not expect any kind of activity from the purple and gold at this year's deadline. Even though the team does need help, it does not appear to be in the cards this season.

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