NBA insider: Lakers could have trouble securing a desired trade piece


The Lakers have reportedly had their eyes on Bojan Bogdanovic but one NBA insider says they’re going to have a hard time prying him from the Pistons.

The Lakers have been linked to a half-dozen high-value trade targets already this season but an NBA insider is implying that one dream target may be out of reach.

Sham Charania of The Athletic said the Lakers are open to trading a contract like Patrick Beverley’s, along with one of their two future first-round picks, for Bogdanovic. The sticking point is that the Pistons may not be willing to part with the veteran forward.

Bogdanovic has had a career year for the Pistons, averaging 21.0 points, 3.6 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game, shooting 50.8 percent from the field and 43.7 percent from beyond the arc. His versatility offensively and ability to function both on and off the ball would be a huge asset for the Lakers, who have really been missing shooters who can help stretch the defense.

Why wouldn’t the Pistons want to trade Bojan Bogandovic to the Lakers?

On one hand, it seems like a deal like the one the Lakers may have offered would be a slam dunk for the Pistons. They’re clearly rebuilding this year and their best player, Cade Cunningham, is out for the season after surgery to address a shin injury. Bogdanovic is under contract for another two seasons so they don’t have to trade him right now to recoup value, but he’s also 33 and his value may never be higher than it is right now. The pick the Lakers offering (either 2027 or 2029) could be pretty appealing with LeBron James and Anthony Davis aging.

However, Bogdanovic’s offense has also been a hugely important stabilizing presence for the rest of the Pistons’ young players — players like Killian Hayes and Saddiq Bey have higher shooting percentages with Bogdanovic on the floor. The Pistons already have the worst record in the league with him on the floor so keeping him is providing developmental value without sacrificing their chances of getting the No. 1 pick in the draft. And, as mentioned above, they still have Bogdanovic under contract for two more seasons and could wait to find a deal they like better.

It might seem weird for the worst team in the league to be holding tightly to a 33-year-old veteran who could be turned into a future first-round pick. But it does make some sense for the Pistons.

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