Report: Zach LaVine reveals Lakers and 4 other teams as preferred landing spots

Jesse Cinquini
4 Min Read
Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

A recent rumor indicates that the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat are among Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine’s preferred landing spots.

“LaVine and his representation hold several preferred landing spots, such as the Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat and Philadelphia 76ers, league sources told Yahoo Sports, and each team has registered some level of interest in the Bulls guard,” Jake Fischer wrote. “LaVine also has an eye on joining the San Antonio Spurs, sources said, in order to pair with rookie sensation Victor Wembanyama and reunite with head coach Gregg Popovich, who oversaw the 2020 Team USA outfit that LaVine helped win a gold medal in Tokyo. There are several other contending situations LaVine would welcome joining, sources said, one being Sacramento. The [Sacramento] Kings signed LaVine to an offer sheet during his restricted free agency in 2018, albeit before this present front office regime took the reins in Northern California.”

Jovan Buha of The Athletic has reported that the Lakers’ interest in the star shooting guard is “real” and that the most likely framework for a trade for LaVine would center around point guard D’Angelo Russell.

The 28-year-old LaVine has struggled to score the ball efficiently so far in the 2023-24 regular season, his seventh as a member of the storied Bulls franchise. He’s shooting just 40.7 percent from the field and 33.0 percent from outside the 3-point arc across 12 appearances.

But, when LaVine is in a rhythm, he’s one of the best scorers in the NBA, as evidenced by his scoring display against the Detroit Pistons back on Oct. 28. He dropped a season-high 51 points while shooting 19-of-33 overall and 7-of-13 from behind the 3-point arc. His performance marked the first 50-point game of any player this season.

If the Lakers can pull off a trade for LaVine, they would have a formidable star trio of LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and LaVine. The trio would — at least on paper — rival Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum and Kristaps Porzingis as well as Kevin Durant, Bradley Beal and Devin Booker for the best threesome on any team in the league right now.

LaVine would arguably be the best scorer that James has played with since joining the Lakers ahead of the 2018-19 season. After all, he has averaged 24-plus points per game in each of his previous four seasons with the Bulls. Davis, meanwhile, has averaged 24 or more points per game in just two of his four full seasons as a Laker.

The Lakers have plenty of time to build a trade package for LaVine, as the trade deadline isn’t until Feb. 8. One has to imagine trade talks between the Lakers and Bulls will heat up over the next few months, particularly if the Bulls continue to lose games.

Chicago owns a poor 4-8 record so far this season and has lost its last two games.

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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.