Lakers apparently forgot to free up space for another max player.
The Los Angeles Lakers finally pulled off the blockbuster Anthony Davis trade, but there's still plenty of work to be done if they want to bring a third superstar to Los Angeles. According to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, the Lakers brass seemingly forgot about clearing up enough cap space while negotiating the deal with New Orleans and are now "scrambling" to trade the three other players on their roster not named LeBron James or Kyle Kuzma.
On Thursday morning's edition of ESPN's The Jump, Ramona Shelburne explained how the Lakers essentially had to call the Pelicans back after the trade details had already been hammered out, in hopes that they could shed some more contracts to create space for another All Star.
“They went all the way down the road and it’s been described to me as a ‘the Lakers called back,’ after everything had been discussed about this,” Shelburne says.
"The way this trade was constructed, this should have been first and foremost on their minds as they were talking to the Pelicans," she said. "This should have been central to the conversations with the Pelicans and my understanding is that it was not."
Wojnarowski reports that the Lakers are "engaging additional teams" in an effort to trade Mo Wagner, Jemerrio Jones and Isaac Bonga, while also looking to purchase second-round picks that will count only as minimum salaries against the cap. The ultimate goal here is to satisfy CBA rules on creating $32M in cap space.
Of course, Anthony Davis would also need to waive his $4.1M trade kicker in order for the Lakers to achieve that goal, but he could always pick up that extra cash on the side as part of his Space Jam 2 deal.