The Los Angeles Lakers have pulled off one of the best tricks this summer and that is getting rid of Luol Deng. He was eating up cap space but no more! He was bought out at a discount and that leaves the Lakers with enough cap space to sign a superstar to a max deal next summer.
Deng took $7.5 million less in order to be bought out by the Lakers. He will still be paid almost 30 million so he is still the winner here. He gets paid and can join another team that may actually let him play. So yes, he gave a lot of money but he’ll be happier… that is if he plays well.
Los Angeles didn’t randomly choose $7.5 million. They chose that amount because that was how much they needed in order to give a superstar player that has been in the league for more than 10 years a max contract. Yes, that means Kevin Durant.
After the upcoming season is over, Durant will be a free agent. The Lakers are setting themselves up to make a play for him and it may happen.
You are wondering why Durant would leave the Golden State Warriors for the Lakers? The biggest reason I could think of is because L.A. is the media hub of the world after New York. Durant wants to be as big as LeBron James and staying in the Bay area will hinder him.
Earlier this summer, James reached out to Durant about teaming up in L.A.. What if Durant didn’t say no? What if he said next year? We may never know but now the Lakers have a chance to sign Durant for a max contract. He won’t have to take a pay cut (he may do it to increase the chances of winning a championship).
It would be fun to see the Warriors play against the Lakers with Durant on the roster! The NBA has become unpredictable and that is why I think this may happen. Durant may just have been making his way slowly to the West Coast. And with the cash being thrown at him, who could blame him?