Drastic changes appear to be on the horizon for the Los Angeles Lakers after arguably the worst season in franchise history. Fortunately, the Lakers have a considerably amount of cap space at their disposal this summer and appear to be targeting small forward Luol Deng according to Sam Amick of USA Today on April 8:
“Another possibility is Luol Deng. Currently with the Cleveland Cavaliers, was traded there from Chicago at midseason, and has not entirely ruled out going back to Cleveland, but he will be a free agent this summer and is definitely on the Lakers’ radar.”
With the majority of the players on the current Lakers squad set to become free agents, the team will have a lot of flexibility in free agency. Although Deng will likely come at a premium, the Lakers may roll the dice on the veteran forward to help upgrade the squad on both ends of the floor.
Along with the cap space available for 2014 NBA free agents, the Lakers will also have a high draft pick in the upcoming 2014 NBA Draft. It appears the team may have a pick in the top five and that may help determine which way they plan to go in free agency.
There's no doubt that Deng will be high up on the list of 2014 NBA free agents for the Lakers, but it remains to be seen if they'll be willing to pay his asking price. Deng could be looking in the neighborhood of $10 million or more a season and that might be too high for a team that is planning on making big moves in the summers of 2015 and 2016.