The Los Angeles Lakers are desperate for some young, impactful players. And while they could probably get one in the upcoming 2014 NBA Draft (if they’re lucky), they’re doing everything in their power not to leave that to chance.
According to a report via ESPN’s Chris Broussard, the Lakers recently called the Knicks to express their interest in Iman Shumpert.
No trade is imminent, and sources say the Lakers’ call was more about doing their due diligence; it’s well-known Shumpert is available. The Lakers are unlikely to make a deal before the end of their current four-game trip, which concludes Tuesday night in Memphis.
But with Steve Blake, who is expected to miss at least six weeks with an elbow injury, joining point guards Steve Nash and Jordan Farmar on the injured list, the Lakers could be interested in strengthening their backcourt.
Shumpert is more of a shooting guard, but with Bryant taking on more of a playmaking role — averaging a career-high 6.7 assists while attempting fewer than nine shots a game — since returning from a torn Achilles tendon last Sunday, it’s easy to see the two playing together.
Shumpert is a better than the stats would say this season – 7.5 points and five rebounds per game. He’s really struggled for much of the year, and a change of scenery could be the best for both parties (Shumpert and the Knicks).
With that said, I’m not sure what the Lakers could offer that would interest the Knicks. However, stranger things have happened.