Nick Wright after Lakers squander Klay Thompson deal: ‘I’m baffled at the total inability of Rob Pelinka’

Jesse Cinquini
3 Min Read
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

In light of news surfacing on Monday that Klay Thompson has agreed to a deal with the Dallas Mavericks, sports personality Nick Wright took a shot at the Los Angeles Lakers’ vice president of basketball operations and general manager Rob Pelinka.

Thompson will join a Dallas team led by one of the better backcourts in the history of the NBA in Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving. Perhaps an outside shooter of Thompson’s caliber to complement Dallas’ two stars is what the Mavericks need to finish the job and win a title after the team came up short against the Boston Celtics in the 2024 NBA Finals.

The Lakers were linked to Thompson in the days leading up to his decision to join the Mavericks and reportedly offered D’Angelo Russell to the Golden State Warriors in an attempt to get a sign-and-trade done.

“I was told the Lakers made a pretty compelling offer,” Chris Haynes said regarding the Lakers’ intentions of acquiring the four-time NBA champion. “It was around a three-, four-year mark somewhere along the lines of 20 million per. And they didn’t get their guy.

“And it was gonna take, obviously, a sign-and-trade scenario, so that had nothing to do with LeBron James’ decision to take less. It was gonna take a sign-and-trade to get Klay, and it did not — it just did not happen. I was told that it would have likely involved D’Angelo Russell being a part of a deal to get Klay. And from what I was told, the Warriors weren’t interested in bringing back D’Angelo Russell.”

Thompson was also allegedly one of three players along with James Harden and Jonas Valanciunas that James was willing to take a pay cut for.

The former Washington State University star is a bit long in the tooth at this stage of his career, considering he is 34 years old and will turn 35 in February. But he is one of the better 3-point shooters ever to play the game of basketball.

Firstly, Thompson has buried the sixth-most 3-pointers of any player in NBA history with 2,481. The only five players with more 3s to their name are Stephen Curry, Ray Allen, James Harden, Damian Lillard and Reggie Miller.

Furthermore, Thompson has shot an impressive 41.3 percent from deep for his career, which is the 20th-highest 3-point percentage in the history of the league.

Now that Thompson is off the market, it will be interesting to see if the Lakers target another 3-point shooter in free agency. Last year’s iteration of Los Angeles left a lot to be desired in terms of scoring the ball from deep, as the team ranked 24th in the league in 3s made per game during the regular season.

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Jesse is a sports journalist with extensive experience covering the NBA. He has worked as a staff writer covering the Lakers’ dreaded rivals, the Boston Celtics, for SB Nation. He has also covered the New York Knicks for The Knicks Wall.