Kyrie Irving becoming a Laker just became more likely.
The Los Angeles Lakers are now willing to include draft picks in a deal for Kyrie Irving. This is a huge deal because this is the only way a deal would get done.
the Los Angeles Lakers are now reportedly willing to include both 2027 and 2029 first-round draft picks in a deal for Kyrie Irving. Earlier in the offseason, the Nets were unwilling to take back Russell Westbrook in any Irving deal. It is unclear if their stance remains unchanged or could change depending on what is received in a potential Durant deal.
There are still hurdles to the deal however.
• As mentioned in the story, the Nets have shown no interest in having Westbrook on their roster, which means involving a third team — the Spurs or Pacers most likely — to take him on (then buy him out). The challenge is those teams would expect first-round draft pick compensation, and if both Lakers’ picks are headed to the Nets, who sends picks to the third team? The Nets only have one first-rounder they could send out (2027, most of theirs belong to Houston from the James Harden deal). But why would they give up a pick unless there is much more than Westbrook coming back to them?
• Would other players — the Nets’ Joe Harris possibly — be part of the trade?
• The Nets have wanted to take care of any Kevin Durant trade before making an Irving trade, but Durant trade talks are stalled out right now.
This is a big story. Kyrie Irving would be a perfect fit for the Lakers and would make them once again a title contender. The main hurdle here is going to be the Nets getting stuck with Westbrook which it seems neither team wants.