Breaking Down the Trade + Magic Johnson is back in LA!

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I’d be lying if I said I didn’t see this coming. First it was lunch with Jeanie Buss then Magic was hired as a consultant for the Lakers then he gave his opinion on what he’d do if he was in charge of the team (for the record, he said he’d bring Kobe back). Out of nowhere, Jeanie Buss fired her brother Jim Buss and Mitch Kupchak. Magic is in charge and he brought Rob Pelinka in as the New GM. That’s a lot to go through in one day.

I can understand why Jeanie Buss made the move. The Lakers are no longer competitive plus Jim Buss gave himself 3 years to turn the team around. By everyone’s account that hasn’t happened. If Jim Buss had to go, Kupchak had to go as well. I understand Kupchak was not as cut throat as some of the other GMs out there. Apparently, the last straw was failing to land Boogie. By some measures Boogie is the best big man in the game. If you have to give up Brandon Ingram to land Boogie, that’s what you do!

I was (and still am) skeptical about Magic’s ability to run the team. I think his strength is oversight and attracting free agents. He has zero experience in running a front office and if he tries to get involved in the finer details, this will fail. He is no cap expert and he is not a numbers guy. I guess all that job falls to Rob Pelinka (who is Kobe Bryant’s agent). Pelinka doesn’t have any front office experience either but you have to think he knows his way around the Collective Bargaining Agreement, player contracts, numbers etc. I think the Lakers need someone who can build a team – Like Daryl Morey, Masai Ujiri or even Sam Hinkie. I think Pelinka will give it a good go but I can’t speculate on what his chances of success are. I will just sit back and watch like everyone else. What a week it has been though.

 

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Magic’s first major decision was to trade Lou Williams to Houston for Corey Brewer and a first round pick.

This trade was a bit of a head scratcher for me. I know Corey Brewer’s shot has been missing this year. He’s down to 4 points per game but he’s 6’9 with and a disruptive defender. In the playoffs, I feel like you need a guy like that on your team. You can stick him on anyone from KD to Curry but I guess the downside is that if his shot is still not falling in then he becomes a liability.

Lou Williams brings bench scoring (but zero defence). He leads the league in bench scoring with over 18 points a game. That’s what Lou Williams does. I remember he led his team in scoring from the bench when he was in Philly. Apart from his injury riddled time in Atlanta, he’s basically taken his scoring talents everywhere he’s been. BUT! Eric Gordon is second in bench scoring with just under 18 points. I didn’t think Houston needed more bench scoring but Daryl Morey did. Houston’s defense isn’t spectacular but I think their defensive ratings go down with this trade. Can they beat either San Antonio or Golden State with this trade? Nope. Maybe they are marginally better but what’s the point?

I think the Lakers win this trade because both Lou Williams and Corey Brewer are on $7 Million contract but the Lakers got a pick back and Corey Brewer’s contract is up in the summer (so is Lou Williams’ by the way). I think the pick is a first round pick too so in the summer when Houston is out of the Playoffs and they don’t renew Mr. Williams’ contract, the Lakers will have a pick (and they will probably not renew Brewer either)

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