Los Angeles Lakers GM opens up about trade rumors; suggests blockbuster could happen

Los Angeles Lakers' Rob Pelinka

The Los Angeles Lakers have been inactive through the first few days of NBA free agency. It was somewhat expected when it comes to the actual free agent market. Los Angeles is not in a position to offer huge long-term deals due to its salary cap situation and the new NBA Collective Bargaining Agreement rules.

However, star forward LeBron James offered to take a pay cut on his next deal so that the Lakers could add another rotational piece.

Of the group he was willing to take a pay cut for were James Harden and Klay Thompson. Harden re-signed with the Los Angeles Clippers in a big-money deal while Klay Thompson was acquired by the Dallas Mavericks in a sign-and-trade with the Golden State Warriors.

This has Los Angeles looking at the trade market for an upgrade behind LeBron James and Anthony Davis after a first-round exit in the 2024 NBA Playoffs. It also has general manager Rob Pelinka and Co. behind the proverbial eight-ball.

There could potentially be some good news on this front for Lakers fans after Pelinka addressed the media on Tuesday.

Related: Los Angeles Lakers reportedly interested in blockbuster trade for NBA champion

Los Angeles Lakers GM suggests they could make blockbuster trade this summer

Los Angeles Lakers' Rob Pelinka
Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The Lakers introduced their 2024 NBA Draft picks on Tuesday. Sure a lot of the talk surrounded first-round pick Dalton Knecht and second rounder Bronny James. But the conversation quickly turned to Los Angeles’ plans moving forward this summer.

“If the right trade comes and we have to put in draft picks, we will,” Pelinka told reporters.

Pelinka did qualify this by indicating that the new CBA rules in the “apron world” makes things more difficult when it comes to pulling off a blockbuster trade.

Los Angeles has been linked to some big names on the trade block. It was considered one of the favorites to land Dejounte Murray from the Atlanta Hawk before he was dealt to the New Orleans Pelicans last week.

The Lakers were in on the aforementioned Thompson. Unfortunately, they were unable to pull off a sign-and-trade with Golden State. That was primarily due to Los Angeles offering up D’Angelo Russell to the Warriors. It was never going to happen.

In addition to Russell, the Lakers have put Rui Hachimura, Gabe Vincent and Jarred Vanderbilt on the trade block. These are valuable salaries. The players? Not so much. This means attaching draft picks would have to happen if the Lakers want to upgrade.

Pelinka is attempting to find a happy medium.

We’ll find out soon enough what the Lakers have planned.

Read more: Brooklyn Nets ‘open’ to trade for Los Angeles Lakers guard, could lead to All-Star signing

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