There is no secret that the Lakers are seeking more shooting on the perimeter as trade season approaches, and armed with the knowledge of that desperation, rival teams are looking to extract as much as possible from L.A. in trade talks. While we’ve heard months of chatter about Myles Turner and Buddy Hield being on the Lakers’ radar, it’s a different team in the Central division that has a shooter L.A. may covet more.
Bojan Bogdanovic has been tremendous in Detroit this year, averaging 21.0 points per game on 50.8/43.7/89.1 shooting splits for the basement-dwelling Pistons, and most recently put 38 points on the Lakers in a Detroit loss this weekend. As such, we got a fresh round of Laker rumors this morning courtesy of Shams Charania and Marc Stein, focused heavily on L.A.’s interest in Bogdanovic. Both Charania and Stein report L.A. has offered Detroit a package with a protected first round pick for Bogdanovic, but have been rebuffed.
Per Stein, the Pistons won’t start negotiations in earnest until an unprotected first is on the table and both report the Pistons insist they’d prefer to keep the veteran sharpshooter rather than deal him.
The Pistons have to date declined those overtures, sources add, insisting on a fully unprotected future first from the Lakers to seriously entertain a Bogdanović swap. Detroit, in fact, continues to tell interested teams (and there are several) that it wants to keep Bogdanović.
According to Shams, the Pistons aren’t the only team the Lakers are inquiring ahead of the December 15 date when players signed this offseason are eligible to be dealt.
The Lakers are prioritizing shooting in their conversations with teams, and have discussed packages including salaries and a protected first-round pick for Detroit’s Bojan Bogdanovic, league sources, who were granted anonymity so that they could speak freely, tell The Athletic. They’ve also discussed concepts involving New York’s Cam Reddish and Evan Fournier, sources said.
Given the Pistons current position — 7-22, last in the East with Cade Cunningham likely out for a considerable amount of time — the insistence they would keep Bogdanovic through the deadline when he could walk in free agency this summer feels like public negotiating and not something they’d really do. The question is whether that will work or if the Lakers would seek out another deal, like the reported Knicks package, for a protected pick considering how terrified they seem of handing out a fully unprotected 2027 or 2029 pick, even if it’s for a player that’s maybe not as good.