Los Angeles Lakers: Giving up on Ivica Zubac at the trade deadline makes no sense

Los Angeles Lakers Ivica Zubac (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Los Angeles Lakers Ivica Zubac (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) /

The Los Angeles Lakers elected to move Ivica Zubac at the NBA Trade Deadline, and it makes absolutely no sense

Just as Ivica Zubac began to pick up stride and find his niche as an NBA big man, he gets a taste of real league business. According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Los Angeles Clippers traded center Mike Muscala to the Los Angeles Lakers for forward Michael Beasley and Zubac.

Muscala never suited up for the Clippers, as he was a part of the blockbuster deal that sent Tobias Harris to the Sixers. Zubac has been heavily coveted by some NBA teams, notably the Clippers.

I must preface my thoughts by saying that the 21-year-old center is not a perennial All-Star, nor does he garner consideration as a really good big man. He did, however, give the Lakers quality minutes off the bench.

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In some instances, Zubac played really well in the starting 5. In his last 10 games, Zubac averaged 13.4 points and six rebounds in 27 minutes of play.

Per 36 minutes, Zubac averages 19.6 points, 11.3 rebounds and two blocks. No, I don’t believe Zubac can put these numbers up on any given night.

He does have the capabilities.

On Jan. 27, Zubac posted 24 points, 16 rebounds and four blocks versus the Phoenix Suns. This was his best game as a Laker.

Ten days prior versus the Oklahoma City Thunder, he scored a career-high 26 points to go along with 12 boards. He was a reliable force in the paint in both games, offensively and defensively.

It does not make sense to me of his departure from the Lakers organization. The young big-man displayed star potential and made the best of every minute on the hardwood.

It is expected – or at least hopeful – that the Lakers will go into next season with an entirely different roster outside of LeBron James. Magic Johnson and Rob Pelinka have both expressed how mandatory it is to sign a marquee free-agent this summer.

The Anthony Davis sweepstakes may be put to rest for the Lakers, but hey, you never know what to expect come the offseason.

With the trade deadline over, Davis is still not going to wear the purple and gold this season. A promising big-man like Zubac would’ve been a nice experiment to see what the Lakers had in him.

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It is safe to say that his potential is through the roof.

Zubac was a nice piece in the post coupled with a lot of youth. The Clippers may have themselves a steal for what it’s worth.