Rumored Lakers trade targets confirm a D'Angelo Russell trade is still likely

Los Angeles Lakers v Utah Jazz
Los Angeles Lakers v Utah Jazz / Alex Goodlett/GettyImages

The Los Angeles Lakers are currently embroiled in trade rumors as the NBA trade deadline approaches, with a particular focus on bolstering their point guard position.

According to ESPN's Dave McMenamin, the Lakers are exploring potential deals for point guards, and two names that have surfaced are Tyus Jones of the struggling Washington Wizards and Collin Sexton of the Utah Jazz.

Tyus Jones, a 27-year-old guard, is lauded for his efficiency, shooting an impressive 52.1% from the field and 42.0% from beyond the arc. He contributes 12.8 points and 5.6 assists per game, making him an attractive option for the Lakers seeking stability in the backcourt. With the Wizards currently out of playoff contention, Jones becomes an intriguing trade target given his expiring $14 million contract.

On the other hand, 25-year-old Collin Sexton has emerged as a dynamic player for the Utah Jazz, averaging 16.9 points and 3.9 assists per game. Known for his athleticism and competitiveness, Sexton's ties to the Lakers through agent Rich Paul, who also represents LeBron James and Anthony Davis, add an interesting dimension to the trade discussions.

D'Angelo Russell great form may not save him from a Lakers trade

The Lakers' pursuit of these guards signals a potential shift away from D'Angelo Russell, whose performance this season has been inconsistent. Russell, averaging 15.7 points, 2.8 rebounds, and 6.1 assists per game, has faced challenges in maintaining the efficiency he displayed in the previous season. While he recently showcased his scoring prowess with 39 points against Utah and 29 in a win over Dallas, the lack of consistency has been a concern.

Russell's spot in the starting lineup became precarious, leading to his temporary benching in a bid to shake things up. However, the Lakers' subsequent struggles prompted his return to the starting five, where he has shown improved form. Nevertheless, ongoing trade rumors suggest that the Lakers may consider parting ways with Russell if his performance wavers in the coming weeks.

The Lakers' interest in Jones and Sexton is not only a response to Russell's form but also a reflection of the team's need for increased depth in the guard position. Apart from Russell and Austin Reaves, the Lakers lack proven guards, with Cam Reddish underperforming and Gabe Vincent sidelined due to injury.

As the trade deadline looms, the Lakers find themselves at a crucial juncture, weighing the potential impact of acquiring new guards on their playoff aspirations and addressing the persistent rumors surrounding D'Angelo Russell's future in Los Angeles. The coming weeks will likely bring clarity to the Lakers' backcourt situation and set the course for the remainder of the season.

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