Author: Dean Carr
Last Updated: August 31, 2022
Following one of the quietest news cycle spells in recent NBA history, fans were finally treated to a trade as the Los Angeles Lakers acquired Patrick Beverley from the Utah Jazz for Talen Horton-Tucker.
The Lakers were in need of a serious roster shakeup after a tumultuous 2021-22 season that saw them finish 11th in the Western Conference standings, as they missed out on the postseason for the first time since 2019.
A mixture of injuries, lack of chemistry and an ageing roster led to the Lakers and Frank Vogel’s demise, as the Head Coach was fired two years after leading the franchise to their 17th Championship. Darvin Ham is the new man in charge and he takes over a roster that has added Beverley, Lonnie Walker, Juan Toscano-Anderson, Thomas Bryant, Troy Brown Jr., Damian Jones, Scotty Pippen Jr., Max Christie and Cole Swider.
They do, of course, still have the star duo of LeBron James and Anthony Davis committed to their roster; the former agreed a two-year, $97.1 million extension to see him through the 2024-25 season earlier this summer. They also have Russell Westbrook in the final year of his contract, though most would expect him to be the next trade piece to be moved given his well-known, infamous relationship with Beverley.
There are now rumours that Westbrook could be moved to Indiana in exchange for Myles Turner and Buddy Hield, but the deal depends on the Lakers’ willingness to include their 2027 and 2029 first-round draft picks. Such a move could leave them with a starting five of Beverley, Hield, James, Davis and Turner, leaving them with what looks to be a competitive lineup that is capable of making the postseason, barring catastrophic injury.
Many NBA sportsbooks agree, including SportsBetting.ag. They have now moved the Lakers to +700 to win the Western Conference in the aftermath of this recent acquisition, while their line for number of regular season wins has been set at 45½. Only three teams have a shorter price than the Lakers in this market in the Golden State Warriors (+350), Los Angeles Clippers (+375) and Phoenix Suns (+500).
As for the Championship, the Lakers are seventh in the ranks. They are behind the Boston Celtics (+500), Milwaukee Bucks (+600), Golden State Warriors (+700), Brooklyn Nets (+750), Los Angeles Clippers (+750) and Phoenix Suns (+1100).
There will be plenty of Lakers fans in California and across the country that will favor those odds given the huge fanbase the Lakers have. A number of the best sportsbooks are already offering odds on these outright NBA markets and the Lakers could fall even shorter if they manage to make the trade for Turner and Hield from Indiana.