LeBron James doesn't want to hear big pitches, will make decision

by Leon Thompson June 26, 2018, 1:31
LeBron James doesn't want to hear big pitches, will make decision

The Lakers traded away their own first-round pick in this draft, the 12th overall, in their deal with Phoenix six years ago to acquire Steve Nash in their disastrous attempt to build a superteam. Right now, they have 11 players under contract for next season.

Some questioned the decision but Thursday night in the 2018 National Basketball Association draft, Wagner got the last laugh as the Los Angeles Lakers drafted him in the first round with 25th overall pick.

Teams and player personnel have already started strategizing on how they can land the 15-year-veteran. Here are the 2018 NBA Draft grades for the Los Angeles Lakers.

"Selecting Moe Wagner was a big target for Magic", Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka said shortly after the team made the pick.

"We feel he's going to be a special, special player".

Head coach Luke Walton raved about the 21-year-old's personality and energy, and claims Wagner has "off-the-charts basketball I.Q". But executing the Lakers' longtime goal of becoming a title contender this summer still will be no easy task.

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Wagner isn't a great defender and like Love, he probably never will be. In his junior season, Wagner was able to set new career-highs with 14.6 points and 7.1 rebounds per game. The Sixers appear to be the best fit for the superstar to sign with them.

The Lakers, in need of perimeter shooting, now have a fiery big who shot 39.4 percent from 3-point range over the past two seasons, draining 108 3s during that span.

Now that there has been time to digest the picks, it's time to take a closer look.

Second-round picks differ from first-round selections in that they don't count against the salary cap. The Cleveland Cavaliers remain an option for James, but rumors and reports have linked James to teams like the Los Angeles Lakers, Philadelphia 76ers, and Houston Rockets.

Leonard wants to be traded to Los Angeles, preferably to the Lakers, sources have told ESPN, leaving Pelinka and team president Magic Johnson in an enviable position of being a desired location for stars. If he doesn't he will become a free agent and can sign with any team he wants.

The Lakers worked out 125 players over the past few months.

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