The Lakers could use another playmaking guard for the postseason. While they as good a playmaker as the game has in LeBron James, there is a steep drop off to Rajon Rondo, the Lakers’ next best perimeter shot creator. That’s why the Lakers are recruiting hard to land Darren Collison if he decides to unretire and come back to the game.
That’s not the only player the Lakers are rumored to be looking at, reports Sean Deveney at Heavy.com.
The Lakers have inquired about a number of potential veteran backup point guards and one potential target could come onto the trade market in the coming weeks: Orlando guard D.J. Augustin. The Lakers can’t trade a second-round pick until 2023, but the team does have rookie Talen Horton-Tucker, originally drafted by Orlando before he was traded to the Lakers, on hand.
After everything Los Angeles sent to New Orleans to land Anthony Davis, the Lakers don’t have a lot of trade chips left (teams are not looking to take on expiring veteran deals). Despite the bare cupboards, the Lakers could have enough to land Augustin.
That is, if Orlando decides to trade him. The Magic are 16-19 on the season and are currently a playoff team, sitting eighth in the East. As the trade deadline nears, if the Magic are still in the postseason mix in the East, they may be hesitant to trade a quality rotation player. Or, at least the price goes up.
Augustin averages 26 minutes a night off the bench for the Magic, giving them 10.6 points per game and some three-point shooting (33.9 percent this season). Augustin is a solid pick-and-roll ball handling guard who shoots out of that play an average of 6.4 times per game — exactly what the Lakers could use as a backup guard. Augustin also is in the final year of his contract, he would not tie up the Lakers’ books going forward.
Collison would be a better player for the Lakers, but if he decides he likes retirement then the Lakers need to have other options. Augustin would be a solid one.