of los angeles lakers When Washington Wizards Completed a 4-year deferred deal Rui Hachimura to Los Angeles in exchange for Kendrick Nunn Three second-round picks (2023, 2028, 2029), the team announced on MondayHachimura averaged 13.0 points and 4.3 rebounds this season for a season-high 30 points. magic over the weekend.
The Lakers have been heavily involved in trade negotiations across the league for virtually the entire season. They spent the offseason looking for new homes for their struggling point guards. Russell Westbrookand when that failed, they entered the season with a roster heavy on the guards and light on the wings.
Their imbalanced roster only became more of an issue as the season progressed. lebron james When Anthony Davis Both have missed a good amount of time and both have been vital in defending opposing forwards. Austin Reeves When Ronnie Walker IVhas also protected the wing, but is absent due to injury. This forced the Lakers to use his 3-man, 4-man, Dallas lineup at Christmas.
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They’ve asked for Tsubasa’s help in the trade market, but it usually doesn’t come cheap, and they’re reluctant to include 2027 and 2029 first-round picks in trades to find upgrades. , Hachimura represents the perfect compromise.
Hachimura, who was drafted ninth overall in 2019 and is entering the final season of his rookie contract, missed much of last season due to personal reasons and suffered a bone contusion that forced him to miss this season’s games. dealt with. In the meantime, he’s struggled to find his place on a Wizards team full of players with rotation capabilities, but the kind of veteran that would help Washington develop into what he wanted when he was drafted. Things came to a head last weekend when Hachimura said he wasn’t sure if he wanted to make the trade. “I just want to be where they want me as a basketball player, and where they love my game,” he said. told reporters.
Now he will fulfill his wish. Hachimura joins the Lakers team and is desperately in need of someone for his position, and seems ready to invest in his development for at least the rest of the season. Get solid grades.
Los Angeles Lakers: A-
the lakers Based on stated heightshortest team NBA This season. Twelve players have played his 400 minutes this season, eight of which he is a guard. 6-foot-5 collegiate points his guard Austin Reeves has spent most of this season at his forward Small. Troy Brown Jr.The 6-foot-6 winger, who started his career as a guard, has played nearly half of his minutes at power forward. Even with Anthony Davis healthy, this was, and still is, a ridiculously small team.They were in dire need of forward-sized humans, and forward-sized humans are one of the NBA’s rarer commodities. Stanley Johnson We piled up the scrap pile and got meaningful production. At 6 feet 8 inches, playing with energy is very rewarding.
Hachimura is a low-risk, high-return addition to the season, and the upside is pretty high. Johnson was a notorious shooter. Hachimura is rather complicated. He has only attempted 2.5 of his 3-pointers per game throughout his career, and that success rate has been inconsistent in his career. He achieved his 33.3% catch-and-shoot percentage in his 2021 and will be there this season, but last year he achieved 47%. The truth lies somewhere in between, but Hachimura has never had a playmaker like LeBron James make his looks, and has never had a big man like Anthony Davis come to the rim for him. I never had a defense pull toward me. He has completed his 42% of wide open 3s this season, but he has only completed 50 of them. He’ll get enough as a Laker.
His defense has been inconsistent, but the indicators are heading in the right direction. FiveThirtyEight’s RAPTOR When Danks & Sleese EPM Both rate him slightly positive. It’s not hard to see why. With a wingspan of 7ft 2, his athletic build of 6ft 8in always poses a problem. The Wizards have often used him for their opponents’ best scorers in recent years.He’s no stopper, but it’s important to have players with the right physical proportions to guard those guys, as it ensures LeBron James doesn’t have to. , has solved that problem with a very small size Patrick BeverlyIt’s not working.
Hachimura’s run in Washington has been mixed. The Lakers have a strong track record with players like that.they rehabilitated Malik Monks pre-season value. They did the same thing this season with Lonnie Walker IV. The Lakers get along well with young athletes who can shoot. The Lakers have spent months figuring out how to get such a player without including a 2027 or 2029 first-round pick.
It’s also the only thing preventing them from getting A’s. This is a good trade. A big trade is needed for the Lakers to enter the championship picture. Hachimura will participate in the rotation. They’re a solid starter at least one he’s away from the true competition, and that player should probably come in Hachimura’s position.his former Washington teammate Kyle Kuzma discussed as a possibility.it is Bojan BogdanovicThe Lakers have improved at forward. they are still thin. What if this is the first of multiple trades the Lakers make? Wow, they have a chance to make some noise.
What if they see this deal as the only move? Well, things get trickier. Besides likely excluding them from championship contention this season, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Lakers plan to re-sign Hachimura after the season. No problem. In fact, the Lakers are a team designed to maximize cap space this offseason, and they can make about $34 million to acquire players from other teams. Hachimura’s $18.8 million cap hold only makes it harder. If he can lead the Lakers to the playoffs, it’s easy to swallow, but without another deal, that’s unlikely to happen. But all things considered, getting this kind of talent without giving up a first-round pick is almost entirely a win for the Lakers.
Washington Wizards: D-
The Wizards didn’t make things worse with this trade. That’s as much credit as they deserve here. They didn’t give out picks. Broadly speaking, this is not a harmful deal. It’s just disappointing.
Hachimura is not Johnny DavisHe’s not a lottery failure who quickly proved he couldn’t play at the NBA level. Hachimura was pretty good as a wizard throughout the seasons. With reasonable overall efficiency and a league average he averages 13 points per game on his 3-point shooting is nothing to scoff at. Most metrics rate him as a premium average defender for his position this season. He has taken on the most difficult opposition assignments at various points in his career. He has great physical tools and has more or less lived up to the expectations of late lottery winners.
It may not be a building player, but it is an investing player.This is something the Wizards haven’t done in quite some time. Last Wizards Draft pick to earn an extension? Otto Porter Jr.was taken almost ten years ago in 2013. NBA DraftLet’s take a look at their first round picks since then:
Again, the Wizards are proving unwilling or unable to properly develop young players. As two stars who are prone to injury, that will become more and more of a problem for them. bradley beer When Kristaps Porzingis, is aging from a stage in his career that could sustain this team without support. If the Wizards cannot quickly create an internal support system for them, the competitive façade this team hoped to maintain will quickly fade.The only way to escape the bottom of the standings.
Wizards doesn’t seem ready to do that at this point. Whether Hachimura lived up to Washington’s wishes is largely irrelevant. He is a talented young player. Wizards don’t have many of them. A handful of second-round picks aren’t a good enough replacement for one, but given their history, it’s pretty much all you can really expect from a talented young player.