Today’s NBA trade deadline was absolutely crazy. It seemed like almost every team in the league was involved in a deal.
Apart from the Lakers, that is.
However, the purple and gold were involved in one of today’s transactions – at least on paper.
The Phoenix Suns traded the Lakers’ 2015 top-five protected pick to the Philadelphia 76ers in a three-team deal with the Milwaukee Bucks that involved Brandon Knight, Michael Carter-Williams, Miles Plumlee and Tyler Ennis, according to Jeff Zillgitt from USA Today.
The Suns acquired the Lakers’ pick in the Steve Nash sign-and-trade a few summers back.
The fact that the Sixers now own the Lakers’ pick changes nothing when it comes to the protections (1-5 in 2015, 1-3 in 2016 and 2017 and unprotected in 2018).
However, the Lakers are set to face the Sixers (who are forever tanking) two times over the team’s remaining 29 games this season. If Philly purposely loses the two games against the Lakers, they will increase their chances of landing L.A.’s pick in May.
If the season ended today, the Lakers would have a 83 percent chance of keeping their pick, per Draft Express, though if they end with the fifth-worst record that percentage drops to just 55 percent.