The first shoe in the NBA’s offseason finally dropped on Saturday, with Anthony Davis moving from New Orleans to the Los Angeles Lakers for a slew of draft picks and young players. Davis was one of the biggest question marks of the NBA offseason, at least as big a question mark as you could be with a full year left on your current contract.
But with Davis joining LeBron James in Los Angeles the rest of the major questions with the NBA offseason lay in free agency. The biggest of those UFAs will undoubtedly be Kevin Durant, even with a career-altering injury that could impact his ability to fullfill a long-term deal and give teams the superstar they need in the immediate sense.
One constant target of speculation is Kemba Walker, he of the Charlotte Hornets and also a pending free agent. The Hornets can offer more than other teams can in a supermax contract, and he claims to love it in Charlotte, but news of the Davis trade on Saturday brought with it that the Lakers are targeting Walker to join James and Davis in Los Angeles.
There is, of course, a lot of speculation here on the Lakers’ part if Walker does choose to stay in the Queen City. For one, there are other guard targets the Lakers could get to make a new kind of Big Three that James had in Miami. But more than that, Walker would have his pick of the free agent lot if he did eschew his deal with Charlotte and look for a payday that doesn’t include the extra year on a contract that the supermax brings.
These things are always fluid, of course, and Walker may not want to go to Los Angeles in the first place. But the reporting made it clear on Saturday that after a long-awaited move that brought Davis to LA, the Lakers have officially set their sights on Kemba next.