The Los Angeles Lakers may currently own the best record in the Western Conference, but they are still expected to be aggressive on the market before the 2021 trade deadline. As other title contenders grow stronger, they should make sure that LeBron James and Anthony Davis have all the necessary help that they need to defend their throne in the 2020-21 NBA season. In a recent article, Greg Patuto of NBA Analysis Network suggested a hypothetical deal that would enable the Purple and Gold to acquire Hassan Whiteside and Glenn Robinson III from the Sacramento Kings.
In the proposed trade scenario, the Lakers would be sending a package that includes Alex Caruso, Alfonso McKinnie, and Kostas Antetokounmpo to the Kings in exchange for Whiteside and Robinson. Though it would cost them a fan-favorite in Caruso, the suggested deal would still make a lot of sense for the Lakers since they would be receiving two solid role players that would further improve their second unit this season.
“The Los Angeles Lakers had veteran Dwight Howard coming off the bench for them last season. He is now playing for the Philadelphia 76ers and they could find a replacement in Hassan Whiteside. This would be the exact same fit that Howard was a year ago. Glenn Robinson III would give the Lakers some needed help from three-point range. It never hurts to add more helpful wing depth when gearing. up for an NBA title and Robinson III would help with that.”
It wouldn’t be a surprise if the Lakers really decide to pursue Whiteside before the 2021 trade deadline. When he became an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2016, they were among the teams that tried to offer him a max contract in free agency. Whiteside may remain a dominant force under the basket but compared to five years ago, they would no longer be needing to break the bank or pay the king’s ransom to bring him to Los Angeles.
Having Whiteside on their roster would give the Lakers insurance in their frontcourt. While he’s only likely to be a key reserve, he could also step up and join the starting lineup when Marc Gasol or Anthony Davis needs to rest or suffers an injury. Aside from Whiteside, the Lakers would also be receiving a three-and-D player in Robinson. Robinson could immediately fill the hole left by Danny Green and Avery Bradley in the wing.
If the trade becomes a reality, it would not only be beneficial for the Lakers, but also for the Kings. Instead of losing Whiteside and Robinson in the 2021 free agency without getting anything in return, the proposed scenario would allow them to turn their expiring contract into three promising talents in Caruso, McKinnie, and Antetokounmpo who could join their young core and speed up the rebuilding process.