NBA Trade Deadline: Biggest needs and targets for each West contender

Hassan Whiteside (Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images)
Hassan Whiteside (Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images) /
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Los Angeles Lakers
NBA Los Angeles Lakers (Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports) /

Los Angeles Lakers

LeBron JamesLos Angeles Lakers look tired, and rightfully so. They won the NBA title in September and didn’t get much of an offseason in preparation to repeat. The Lakers are still the best defensive team in the League and LeBron is still doing amazing things at the age of 37. Anthony Davis’s health is the key to their championship repeat, and his Achilles injury sure is troubling as the Lakers went into a tailspin when this injury happened.

Need: Shooting

But assuming Davis comes back and even if the Lakers go after Andre Drummond, frontcourt will not be a weakness of theirs. Or it is a weakness of theirs is their offense – they are currently 20th in the League in offense and are 22nd in 3-point shooting (35%). Yuck. This team is completely dependent on fastbreak opportunities and LeBron’s playmaking. With LeBron anything is possible, but the Lakers need to add some guys who can stroke it to have a real chance to repeat.

Solution: J.J. Reddick

J.J. Reddick would help fix this. Reddick seems more than willing to get away from Stan Van Gundy and could be a perfect plug-in heat check shooter for a great team. Reddick could provide more off-ball action that would keep those defenses spread and create even bigger lanes for LeBron and AD come playoff time.

Having Reddick on the floor late in games should help the Lakers avoid slogs of offense late in games when more halfcourt possessions occur. The fear would be if Reddick is continuously hunted out on defense by other teams, but the Lakers team defense should mitigate that.

Again, JJ Redick is a 41 percent 3-point shooter, and the Lakers are lacking shooting. Seems like it makes the most sense.

Others: Wayne Ellington, Evan Fournier (expensive)