For the LA Clippers, the need for an upgrade at point guard has been somewhat overblown over the course of the offseason and early season. Despite such an alleged weakness, the starting unit is one of the best five man lineups in the entire NBA. The fact is, the Clippers’ biggest need is probably another defensive wing to come off the bench.
But, of course, that won’t stop the LA Clippers front office from exploring all avenues to try to upgrade the team. Today, a rumor (unsubstantiated right now) dropped that the Clippers are among the teams investigating the availability of New Orleans point guard Lonzo Ball.
Are the LA Clippers interested in trading for Lonzo Ball?
There’s no question that Ball would fit well with the team, especially as a bench guard, which is the role you have to assume he’d be filling. He’s an unselfish passer and a plus on the defensive end, which would automatically fill some needs for the reserves. If he could work on his shot (I know, I know), he could fill the same niche for the bench that Patrick Beverley plays for the starters.
After a start to a career in which drama seemed to follow Lonzo everywhere he went, he’s had a relatively muted time in New Orleans, letting his play do the talking. There’s no solid indication that Ball is available, but it’s good to know that the team might be pushing to improve.
The big question, outside of “is he available?” is the money. To make the salaries match, the LA Clippers would have to be looking at something like this:
For the Clippers, they get a young player who can contribute right now in the playoffs, and who still has potential to grow. The New Orleans Pelicans get a proven scorer off the bench and a couple of young prospects who could turn into something. They also get some haul of second round picks, using (hopefully not all of) the four seconds the LA Clippers got in the Luke Kennard deal.
It’s hard to gauge what Lonzo’s trade value is leaguewide. Could this be too much? Or could it not be enough? It’s tough to say, and that’s likely part of what the Clippers front office is looking to find out.