Ideal Trade Partners for Los Angeles Lakers to Trade Down with in 2014 Draft

The Los Angeles Lakers 2014-15 roster consists of the following players: Kobe Bryant ($23.5 million), Steve Nash ($9.7 million) and Robert Sacre (approximately $900,000). With only three guaranteed contracts on the books, it makes sense for L.A. to trade down in the 2014 NBA draft as a means of acquiring more picks.

Hiring a new head coach to replace the departed Mike D’Antoni should still be management’s No. 1 priority. The front office will have an easier time finding players if it knows what system will be in place beforehand.

Nevertheless, Lakerland needs a minimum of nine players to fill out the roster for next season besides Bryant, Nash and Sacre. Kendall Marshall will likely have his cheap, non-guaranteed deal picked up during the offseason, but that still leaves the Lakers with a variety of holes to fill.

Purple and Gold didn’t manage to get lucky in the draft lottery. Instead of vaulting into the top three selections for a shot at high-stock prospects like Jabari Parker or Dante Exum, L.A. actually fell one spot to No. 7 overall.

With that position, the Lakers could potentially land incoming talents like Julius Randle, Noah Vonleh, Aaron Gordon or Marcus Smart. Whether general manager Mitch Kupchak and his scouts are high on any of those youngsters remains to be seen.

The Lakers could very easily stand pat at No. 7, draft whichever available target they like best and move forward accordingly.

One possible alternative, however, is trading back in the draft to acquire more assets from another franchise. The Lakers desperately need to add depth while getting younger. They can kill two birds with one stone by moving back from their current draft position.

But what teams—if any—are ideal partners to surrender assets while moving up to No. 7?


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