Report: Lakers interested in Zach LaVine and his availability ahead of trade deadline

Peter Dewey
3 Min Read
Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers reportedly are interested in Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine and his availability ahead of this season’s trade deadline.

“Teams looking for offense, and that includes the Los Angeles Lakers, are interested in Zach LaVine and his availability,” wrote USA Today’s Jeff Zillgitt.

There have been several reports linking the Lakers to LaVine, but there have also been conflicting views on if the two teams would actually agree to a deal.

LaVine is also dealing with a foot injury that has sidelined him since late November. The last game that the Bulls star played in was on Nov. 28 against the Boston Celtics. If LaVine is hurt for much longer, the Lakers may be less interested in making a deal for him.

A two-time All-Star, LaVine is a proven scorer. He’s averaged at least 21 points per game in every season since the 2018-19 campaign, and he has put up solid numbers this season despite a decrease in his field-goal attempts per game.

LaVine is attempting just 16.6 shots per game this season after taking 18.0 shots per game in the 2022-23 season.

In the 2023-24 campaign, the former lottery pick is averaging 21.0 points, 4.9 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game while shooting 44.3 percent from the field and 33.6 percent from beyond the arc.

With the Bulls off to a slow start – they are just 15-20 ahead of Wednesday’s game against the New York Knicks – the team may look to move LaVine this season.

Since the Bulls’ other star wing DeMar DeRozan is in the final season of his contract, the team may decide to go into a rebuilding phase if it is not contending for a playoff spot by the trade deadline.

LaVine has multiple seasons remaining on his current deal. He is under contract through the 2025-26 season and has a player option for the 2026-27 campaign. He signed a five-year, $215 million deal with the Bulls prior to last season.

It has been reported that the Bulls would likely want both Austin Reaves and Rui Hachimura in any deal with the Lakers for LaVine.

Los Angeles will likely have to decide if parting ways with key rotation players is worth adding a third star to the roster this season. The Lakers have had multiple star players in the LeBron James era (Russell Westbrook, James and Anthony Davis played together), but it did not go as planned.

A trade for LaVine could be different, but the Lakers luckily don’t have to make a decision to deal for the Bulls star just yet.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.