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Rumor: Andre Drummond could join Lakers if he gets Cavaliers buyout

Cavaliers center Andre Drummond vs. Lakers

Jan 25, 2021; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers center Andre Drummond (3) drives between Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) and center Montrezl Harrell (15) in the first quarter at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

The Cavaliers want to trade Andre Drummond.

But it’s not easy to trade a limited center with a $28,751,774 salary.

So, a buyout is possible – which could get Drummond to the Lakers.

Marc Stein of The New York Times:

This is far from definite language – “optimism,” “strong consideration,” “if.” But NBA rules dictate caution when leaking information like this. Drummond is still under contract with Cleveland, after all. I infer fairly significant Drummond-to-Los Angeles momentum if he’s bought out.

The Lakers don’t exactly need another center with Anthony Davis, Marc Gasol, Montrezl Harrell and Markieff Morris.

But it’s unclear which forwards and guards will be available to Los Angeles.

Drummond could provide athletic size the Lakers lost with Dwight Howard’s and JaVale McGee’s departures last offseason. Drummond rebounds excellently. Perhaps, he – like McGee did in Los Angeles – would defend more effectively in a narrow role. Drummond’s effectiveness as an interior scorer and passer can drift with his focus. Again, playing for the championship-contending Lakers could bring out the best in him.

First, though, Drummond must become a free agent. The Cavs still hold the cards.