Surprising Player Named As "Lakers Best Trade Piece"

LeBron James isn't going anywhere. Neither is Anthony Davis. And it's hard to find a team willing to take on Russell Westbrook. So just who is the Los Angeles Lakers' "best trade piece"? One NBA executive says it's Kendrick Nunn, as relayed to Sean Deveney of Heavy Sports. 

He could help someone. But they need to show he is healthy. He’s got a very manageable contract ($5.25 million, expiring this summer) and they’re dying for size on that team. They’re not going to trade LeBron (James) or Anthony Davis obviously, so the best package they can put out there is Nunn and (Patrick) Beverley and one of their picks (in 2027 or 2029). Honestly, he is their best trade piece right now.

Nunn missed the entire 2021-22 season due to a knee injury, but in the two years prior to that, he averaged 15 points, 3.0 assists and 2.9 rebounds for the Miami Heat. He also shot 36.4% from downtown. 

This year, he's returned to action, now as a Laker. Overall, in 37 games, he's averaging 6.6 points in about 13 minutes per game. But he's seen his minutes and production ramp-up recently, with five double-digit point performances in the last seven games, in which he's averaged 11.4 points and about 20 minutes. 

He's shown himself to be a 15-point-a-night scorer on a team that went to the NBA Finals, and if he can continue to inch closer to that kind of production, he could be a trade chip for the Lakers that other teams will take a chance on. 

Deveney reports that Nunn could in fact be part of a deal to get Cam Reddish out of the doghouse in New York, and the Lakers are indeed one of three teams said to be in negotiations with the Knicks

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