The Los Angeles Lakers have missed out on Kyrie Irving, which is unfortunate as they have been looking for an elite player to add next to LeBron James on the roster. With that being said, they could end up taking a different direction in a trade with the Brooklyn Nets.
Since Kyrie Irving is gone, it is possible that the Brooklyn Nets will elect to move Kevin Durant prior to the trade deadline. In that case, the Los Angeles Lakers could try to get him with a package centered on Anthony Davis. Here is our wild trade scenario for that to happen.
Los Angeles Lakers Receive: Kevin Durant, Ben Simmons
Brooklyn Nets Receive: Anthony Davis, Russell Westbrook, Patrick Beverley, 2027 First-Round Pick (LAL)
This would be a wild trade to see, and thus far there are no indications that either side is contemplating a deal with this framework. However, it could end up being a win-win proposition, and let's dive in to see why both teams should make this trade.
The key for the Los Angeles Lakers as of right now is to figure out a way to build a contending team with LeBron James, while not sacrificing too much of their future. This trade could potentially be a way to do so.
Anthony Davis is a top-10 player when he's fully healthy, but most people would agree that Kevin Durant is the better player of the two. A partnership between LeBron James and Kevin Durant would be good from a basketball-fit perspective. LeBron James could run the offense for the Lakers, and let Kevin Durant focus on the scoring. James is at his best as a point forward and Durant is at his best as a scorer, and this would allow both of them to play to their strengths rather than having to do everything for a team. LeBron James and Kevin Durant would become a top-3 duo in the NBA, if not the best duo.
On top of getting Kevin Durant in this deal, the Los Angeles Lakers would also be taking on Ben Simmons' contract. He would be a defensive specialist for the team, which could also provide some rebounding and playmaking. Though he wouldn't be able to replicate Anthony Davis' impact on that end of the floor, Ben Simmons was in DPOY conversations in the past, and he could still be a positive player on that end of the floor for the Los Angeles Lakers. His contract is viewed as a negative right now, but perhaps Ben Simmons could rebuild his reputation on the Lakers.