Good morning to everyone but especially to…
RUI HACHIMURA AND THE LOS ANGELES LAKERS
With the trade deadline just over two weeks away, the Lakers, acquiring Rui Hachimura from the Wizards in exchange for Kendrick Nunn and three second-round picks (2023, 2028 and 2029).
- Hachimura, 24, was the ninth pick in the 2019 draft. He has averaged double-digit points each of his four seasons and shot a respectable 35.6 percent from three, though that’s down this year.
- However, he struggled to find consistent minutes thanks to Washington’s logjam at forward and several health issues. He has not played more than 57 games in a season.
- In his final game with the Wizards on Saturday, and declared afterward, “I can help teams.”
The Lakers desperately need his help. The 6’8″ Hachimura can fill a key role in both small and big lineups, and even if the shooting never returns to last season’s level (47 percent on catch-and-shoot 3-pointers), things should be easier playing alongside LeBron James.
Our Sam Quinn gave the Lakerswhile acknowledging there’s work to be done.
- Quinn: “Lakers: A- | The Lakers do well with young athletes who can shoot. That broadly describes Hachimura. The Lakers have spent months trying to find a way to land such a player without including their 2027 or 2029 first-round picks. They’ve now done so. … This is a good trade. The Lakers need a great trade to get into the championship picture.”
The Wizards, meanwhile,, and it’s totally deserved. They haven’t signed their first-round pick to an extension since Otto Porter Jr. (drafted in 2013), and , “Yet again, the Wizards have proven either unwilling or unable to properly develop young players.”
Oh, and as for those second-round picks? No Wizards second-rounder from the past 10 drafts has even played for the team. Washington also announced that Kristaps Porzingis (ankle) is. Sigh.
And not such a good morning for…
Kansas has tied history, and not in a good way. Baylor for their third straight loss. That matches their longest losing streak under Bill Self (since 2003-04)., at No. 17