With the 2018-19 NBA season ready to kick off in just over a month, teams are beginning to finalize their rosters for opening day. But some teams are already looking ahead to next summer’s free agency. The Los Angeles Lakers are one of these teams, as they hope to keep up with the Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets who have added some weapons of their own this past offseason.
Kawhi Leonard of the Toronto Raptors has made his intentions clear for a while now that he wants to come to Los Angeles and the Lakers have repeatedly reciprocated their interest in him. But he may not be the biggest name on the radar for them this upcoming offseason according to ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne.
“My feeling about it, my sense from just talking to people in and around this [is that] one, it’s a little early, but I think they like [Thompson],” Shelburne said on ESPNLA Mornings with Keyshawn, LZ and Travis. “I think that would be the guy, in terms of skill set and how that would fit. Obviously Kawhi, he’s a great player as well, but we’ll see if he stays in Toronto now. But I think they like Klay [Thompson].”
— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) September 8, 2018
Klay Thompson, who becomes a free agent next July, would be a definite upgrade at shooting guard for the Lakers, with Kentavious Caldwell-Pope currently holding that position. He would add height and size to the Laker’s lineup but more importantly elite defensive and shooting capabilities. Thompson’s ability to consistently convert on catch-and-shoot opportunities would aid in a Lebron-led offense filled with dribble-drive penetration.
Thompson has ties to Los Angeles through his father Mychal who played for the Lakers between 1987 and 1991 and is currently a radio color commentator for Laker games. But even with the reported interest that the Lakers are showing towards Thompson and his connections to the team, it still requires shared interest for any of this to matter. And there has been very little to even hint that Thompson has intentions of leaving the Warriors anytime soon.
“I’ve said it many times before,” Thompson said to the East Bay Times in August. “I would like to be a Warrior for life.”
So unless the Warriors’ star changes his mind, expect the Lakers’ attempt to land Thompson to be to no avail.