Dejounte Murray is emerging as one of the top targets who might be available nearing the NBA trade deadline, and the Los Angeles Lakers reportedly may be able to land the Atlanta Hawks guard if they are willing to part with Austin Reaves as part of the deal.
“There does seem to be a pathway for a Murray-to-Los Angeles deal if the Lakers would be willing to include Reaves, sources said, although that would require the Hawks to send back more value for Los Angeles’ liking,” wrote Jake Fischer.
The Lakers could be one of the more active teams approaching the trade deadline next month as they look to improve the team to make another run at an NBA championship. A recent cold spell dropped them below .500 but they have won two games in a row and have a 19-19 record heading into their game against the Phoenix Suns on Thursday.
The Lakers lost nine of 11 games before the current modest winning streak, raising some doubts about the job security of head coach Darvin Ham. The 50-year-old recently removed guard D’Angelo Russell from the starting lineup after reportedly consulting on the move with LeBron James and Anthony Davis.
James has been taking on the role of point guard at times this season, but ESPN analyst Kendrick Perkins said that formula may be unsustainable over the long term.
Murray might be able to remove some burden from the 39-year-old if the Lakers do trade for him. The 27-year-old is averaging 21.1 points and 5.0 assists per game in 36 appearances for the Hawks this season.
Entering play Thursday, Atlanta is in 11th place in the Eastern Conference with a 15-21 record. The Hawks reportedly are entertaining the idea of becoming true sellers at the trade deadline.
Based on an earlier conflicting report, a deal between the Lakers and Hawks for Murray could be unlikely due to Reaves and Rui Hachimura not being enough to satisfy Atlanta.
With so many rumors surrounding the Lakers, it seems inevitable that they will make at least one significant move before the trade deadline. Whether that is something that involves Murray or Reaves remains to be seen.