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Report: Lakers, Celtics looking to trade out of late first round picks in NBA Draft

Mitch Kupchak

Mitch Kupchak


The Lakers and Celtics each have two picks in the first round of the upcoming NBA Draft, but if the teams get their way, they’ll only be selecting one player apiece to add to their respective rosters.

L.A. has the second overall pick, along with the 27th. Boston, meanwhile, has picks at 16 and 28.

But because those late first round picks represent guaranteed salary commitments, both the Lakers and Celtics would rather trade them and look to add talent somewhere else.

From Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders:

Lakers are also trying to move out of the 27 and Boston trying to move out of 28 too... no surprise on either - both covet capspace

The 27th overall pick will receive a guaranteed first year salary of $930,500, while the 28th overall pick is guaranteed $924,800.

Since both Boston and L.A. have picks early in the second round (at 33 and 34, respectively), and since there isn’t a huge gap there in terms of what may be available from a talent perspective, they would rather not tie up valuable cap space with players who may or may not be ready to provide an immediate contribution.

The interesting part about this is that teams (like the Celtics, especially) are constantly looking to accumulate draft picks, in order to have “assets” that they can package in theoretical trades in the future. But for teams looking to maximize available space under the salary cap, late first-rounders like these can sometimes be viewed as the opposite.