Los Angeles Lakers

NBA Rumors: Lakers 'rooting' for Kyrie Irving to sign with Nets

NBA Rumors: Lakers 'rooting' for Kyrie Irving to sign with Nets

Kyrie-to-Brooklyn rumors have dominated the prelude to NBA free agency, and the Los Angeles Lakers likely are hoping those rumors turn out to be true.

That's because Irving to the Nets would open the door for guard D'Angelo Russell to return to L.A. If and when Irving signs with the Nets, they'd likely renounce Russell to make Irving their new star point guard and thus, Russell would become an unrestricted free agent.

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski explained the scenario Tuesday night on ESPN.

“The Lakers now at this point are rooting for Kyrie Irving to go to Brooklyn,” Wojnarowski said. “Because then Brooklyn renounces D’Angelo Russell, who is a restricted free agent. He becomes unrestricted and then the Lakers could sign Russell as their third star in LA. And they get back a much more mature, polished player, who's been an All-Star, whose put a team into the postseason.”

Watch the clip below:

The latest Kyrie-Nets report states Brooklyn remains the 27-year-old's "preferred choice" in free agency, so the Lakers very well may just get their wish.

As for where the Celtics go from here without Irving, they're reportedly trying to lure free agent Kemba Walker as their next star.

NBA free agency gets underway on June 30.

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Michael Holley Podcast: State of the Los Angeles Lakers with LA Times' Brad Turner

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NBC Sports Boston Illustration

Michael Holley Podcast: State of the Los Angeles Lakers with LA Times' Brad Turner

The NBA hot-stove season is in full swing so over the next few episodes Michael checks in with some of his NBA insider friends across the country. First up, Brad Turner of the Los Angeles Times,

They discuss all the moves that the Lakers have made so far, particularly the Anthony Davis trade and who actually won the deal? 

They also spoke about what other players the Lakers should target like Kyrie Irving or Kawhi Leonard and is there any concern about team chemistry. 

Turner also gave his thoughts on what really went down in the Lakers front office and why Magic Johnson stepped down. 

Lastly, they broke down Jay-Z vs Kendrick Lamar in a lyrics battle. Who you got!? Enjoy the episode:

LISTEN & SUBSCRIBE:

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Jackie MacMullan: Lakers and Pacers could be landing spots for Al Horford

Jackie MacMullan: Lakers and Pacers could be landing spots for Al Horford

With reports signaling Al Horford's likely departure from the Celtics, Jackie MacMullan believes two likely landing spots for the big man could be the Lakers and Pacers.

Horford declined his $30.1 player option Tuesday and discussed a deal to return to the Celtics for at least three more years. However, the two sides were reportedly too far apart on terms to agree to a deal, so Horford will look for a three or four-year deal elsewhere. 

The Lakers just completed a trade for Anthony Davis, leaving them with about $23 million in cap space if the deal is executed on July 6. Horford would presumably be their third option alongside two of the best in the world in Davis and LeBron James. 

The Pacers, who were swept by Horford and the Celtics in the first round of the playoffs, cleared a ton of cap room for free agents but don't appear to be major players for the top-tier players available like Kawhi Leonard and Jimmy Butler.

Horford could give them a steady form of production in the frontcourt to play with All-Star guard Victor Oladipo and potentially mentor the young, talented Myles Turner. 

Losing Horford should be a tough blow to the Celtics regardless of who he ends up with, but to see him leave for the arch-rival Lakers would be a massive gut-punch to Celtics fans everywhere. 

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