GAME-CHANGING: Speculation about Trae Young potentially joining the Lakers has been fueled by NBA insider

GAME-CHANGING: Speculation about Trae Young potentially joining the Lakers has been fueled by NBA insider

The NBA rumor mill has recently been rife with speculation about Atlanta Hawks star point guard Trae Young, who has been out of the lineup since late February due to finger surgery. Since then, the Hawks have oddly gained ground in the coveted Eastern Conference playoff picture, prompting some to wonder whether the organization may explore for prospective Young trade partners this offseason.

Lakers, hawks, trae young, trae lakers, trae trade

Naturally, when a major name is on the market, the Los Angeles Lakers are the first team that comes to mind, and Trae-to-LA rumors quickly spread among the Lakers fandom.

For his part, NBA insider Jovan Buha of The Athletic fueled the fire with comments made during a live webcast.

“(The Lakers) are going third star hunting this off-season and we’ll see how that affects the DLO situation,” Buha told the media. “Almost any third-star trade would require you to give up Austin. Now, who is available? Trae Young is the one name I keep hearing. He has already attended Laker playoff games and is a Clutch Sports client. That’s definitely the most realistic option right now.

Another NBA insider is now bringing more perspective to these chats.

The Lakers Could Land Trae Young This Offseason Because Of His Ties To  Klutch Sports - Fadeaway World

“So, to me, the Hawks thing is interesting because it’s only recently there have been legitimate — whatever, let me think how I wanna phrase this — rumblings about the possibility of Trae Young actually being traded,” said Tim McMahon of ESPN. “Only recently has that been something that you would even think would be a consideration for the Hawks.”

What can the Lakers offer the Hawks?

The most apparent initial name for any deal the Lakers may make this offseason is guard Austin Reaves, who has evolved as a starting-caliber NBA talent after going undrafted (willingly) in 2021. Although Reaves is a few months older than Young, he is still seen as a younger prospect in league circles, with opportunity for improvement after a successful run with Los Angeles.

Of course, there are draft picks, which the Lakers are currently unable to offer to other clubs but will be able to do so come the summer due to league rules.

Lakers Can Land Trae Young In A Realistic Trade Scenario This Summer -  Fadeaway World

Meanwhile, the Hawks have reached a crossroads in their franchise. The team has steadily declined since their miraculous run to the Eastern Conference Finals in 2021, and while Young remains one of the league’s premier offensive engines, team owner Tony Ressler’s refusal to pay the luxury tax has left Atlanta with a less-than-compatible roster around Young, especially given the polarizing star’s well-documented limitations.

In any event, both the Lakers and Hawks will be hoping to make playoff runs this spring, which will most likely begin in the dreaded Play-In round if things remain as they are.

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