NBA Trade Rumors: Los Angeles Lakers primary trade deadline target revealed

The Los Angeles Lakers have their sights set on making a big move at the NBA Trade Deadline.

Indiana Pacers v Los Angeles Lakers: Championship - 2023 NBA In-Season Tournament
Indiana Pacers v Los Angeles Lakers: Championship - 2023 NBA In-Season Tournament / Ethan Miller/GettyImages
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NBA Trade Rumors: The Los Angeles Lakers are expected to make Dejounte Murray their primary NBA Trade Deadline target.

In an ideal world, the moves that the Los Angeles Lakers made during the offseason would've been enough to help this team take a step forward this season as a championship contender in the Western Conference. However, we don't live in a perfect world and the NBA doesn't operate in one. The result is that the Lakers, with just a few weeks ahead of the NBA Trade Deadline, find themselves in a difficult situation.

Even with a healthy LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the Lakers have struggled to keep pace with the other contenders in the conference. In fact, at nearly the midway point of the season, Los Angeles finds themselves ranked 10th in the conference and already 4.5 games out of the sixth seed.

If the Lakers want to avoid having to play their way into the playoffs for a second straight season, they're going to have to make a strong push over the course of the next couple of months. One way they can accomplish that is by adding a difference-maker at the trade deadline that would help jump-start the team.

Even though the Lakers are expected to be active in the weeks leading up to the trade deadline, finding the right piece could prove to be difficult. However, we may be getting an indication of who their primary target over the next few weeks could be.

According to a recent report, the Lakers are expected to seriously explore acquiring Dejounte Murray from the Atlanta Hawks. The one-time All-Star guard is widely expected to be moved ahead of the February 8 trade deadline, with many teams, including the Lakers, as possible suitors.

Can the Los Angeles Lakers pull off a trade for Dejounte Murray?

It's going to be admittedly difficult for the Lakers to win a bidding war for Murray on the open market, especially when you consider the Lakers only have one tradable future first-round pick and the fact that they may not be willing to include Austin Reaves in a potential swap.

There is a path toward the Lakers making a trade work from a financial standpoint, but if they are unwilling to trade Reaves, it could put Los Angeles in a difficult spot in terms of negotiations.

Would a package centered around Rui Hachimura, one of their rookies, and perhaps a first-round draft pick be enough to get a deal done? I'd have my doubts. I think the bigger question is whether the Lakers would be willing to include Reaves in a deal. If so, this possibility becomes that much more likely.

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Either way, it seems like the Lakers may have their sights set on Murray ahead of the NBA Trade Deadline.