The biggest dominoes of the NBA's free-agency point guard market have already started to fall. Chris Paul is all but assured to re-sign with the Phoenix Suns, and Kyle Lowry is expected to join Jimmy Butler in Miami via a sign-and-trade.
From there, league personnel continue to ask where Dennis Schroder will land in this summer's spending spree. The Los Angeles Lakers hope to net returning talent in a sign-and-trade involving the 27-year-old, and they have not ended their search for ways to land Buddy Hield.
However, it appears the Lakers have not been in extensive contact with Schroder and his representatives, sources told Bleacher Report, and the two sides do not seem to be working in tandem ahead of the new league year beginning at 6 p.m. ET Monday. A sign-and-trade requires agreement from both teams and the free agents involved.
Several teams do still appear to be in play for Schroder. The Chicago Bulls, New York Knicks, New Orleans Pelicans and Washington Wizards all have an apparent need at point guard.
There's a strong sense around the NBA that the Bulls will extend a four-year, roughly $80 million offer sheet for Lonzo Ball. However, Chicago brass did contact executives and personnel around the league over the weekend, sources told B/R, exploring contingency plans centered around Schroder, DeMar DeRozan and Richaun Holmes, should the Pelicans proceed to match the Bulls' offer.
There seems to be legitimate traction on a three-team sign-and-trade framework between Chicago, New Orleans and Charlotte that would likely nullify any of the Bulls' fears of losing out on their preferred point guard target. From conversations with multiple league sources, the framework that would be discussed appears to focus on landing Ball in Chicago, Devonte' Graham in New Orleans and Tomas Satoransky, Josh Hart and draft capital to Charlotte.