The Los Angeles Lakers are rumored to be interested in free-agent point guard Kyrie Irving, but it likely would take a sign-and-trade with the Dallas Mavericks to get him to the West Coast.
However, it remains to be seen if the Lakers have enough to entice the Mavs to make such a move, and one NBA executive told Sean Deveney of Heavy.com that sending back point guard D’Angelo Russell likely wouldn’t be satisfactory to complete a deal.
“Does Dallas really want that? Maybe Russell is less of a headache than Kyrie but he is not as talented,” the exec said. “The Mavs might not have a lot of choices with Kyrie, but just taking back D’Angelo Russell straight up, that does not make them better. So why do it? And a lot of people in that [Lakers] organization think they need to keep Russell.”
Los Angeles acquired Russell at the trade deadline this season, and he was a solid third option behind LeBron James and Anthony Davis.
Unfortunately, his production fell off a cliff in the Western Conference Finals against the Denver Nuggets, as he averaged 6.3 points on 32.3 percent shooting and 13.3 percent from three-point range during the four-game sweep.
It would be hard to convince the Mavs to take on Russell after his disappointing display.