The Los Angeles Lakers reeled in the biggest fish of the NBA offseason when they signed LeBron James to a four-year, $153.3 million contract, and they will have to get their fishing pole out again next offseason in order to secure another star to pair with King James.
The leader in the clubhouse, of course, is Kawhi Leonard. The Raptors forward was traded from the San Antonio Spurs to Toronto this offseason after asking to be traded following a breakdown in his relationship with the team. The Los Angeles native reportedly desires to play for either the Lakers or Los Angeles Clippers, and will be a free agent next offseason.
While a pairing of Leonard and James would strike fear into the hearts of the other NBA teams, the 2014 NBA Finals MVP isn’t the only player the Lake Show is targeting.
ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne discussed the Lakers on ESPNLA’s “Mornings with Keyshawn, LZ and Travis,” and she said that the Lakers might have another star atop their list for next summer: Klay Thompson.
“In terms of who they target next year, it’s whoever wants to come,” Shelburne said. “My feeling about it, my sense from just talking to people in and around this (is that) one, it’s a little early, but I think they like Mychal’s boy. I think that would be the guy, in terms of skillset and how that would fit. Obviously Kawhi, he’s a great player as well, but we’ll see if he stays in Toronto now. But I think they like Klay (Thompson).”
Targeting Thompson makes a lot of sense for the Lakers. His two-way game would fit wonderfully next to James, and if they could lure him away from the Golden State Warriors it also would weaken the best team in the NBA.
Thompson has stated that he wants to be a Warrior for life and is willing to take a discount to stay in the Bay Area, but he could have a change of heart after this season.
While it’s unlikely that the sharpshooter will leave the Dubs for LA, the Lakers still have a high chance of signing either Leonard, or perhaps Kevin Durant, to play alongside James.
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