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The Los Angeles Lakers reportedly tried to make a trade deal with the Cleveland Cavaliers for Dion Waiters prior to his move to the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Waiters moved to OKC as part of a three-team deal on Monday which saw both JR Smith and Iman Shumpert move from the New York Knicks to the Cavaliers.
While several Draft picks also exchanged hands, it has been revealed that the Lakers had an interest in acquiring Waiters, but they were short of appealing assets to persuade Cleveland to make a deal.
“Lakers were among teams that had tried to get Waiters. Cleveland wasn’t looking for just salary relief though and Shumpert was more valuable than Robert Sacre,” ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne revealed.
Although the Cavaliers need a defensive big man to protect the rim, they clearly didn’t believe that Sacre was the player to fill the gap. The Lakers man is coming off the bench to play 14.3 minutes per game in 34 appearances so far this season.
In addition, the prospect of adding Shumpert to the roster was an opportunity that they felt that they couldn’t turn down, as the former Knicks star certainly adds wing defense which has been needed.
However, it is another disappointing scenario for the Lakers who also reportedly missed out on Rajon Rondo last month as he swapped the Boston Celtics for the Dallas Mavericks.
The Lakers have the cap space to add a superstar in free agency, but it is clear from recent dealings that they might have a difficult time in persuading players to join them. While Kobe Bryant has one year remaining on his contract, the franchise will need to rebuild quickly if they are to have one last opportunity at a championship with the 36-year-old.