Lonzo Ball has been a polarizing player since before he entered the NBA. After years at Chino Hills, a great outing at UCLA, and a couple of years spent in Los Angeles, the fourth-year guard is now running the show in New Orleans. However, with reports of the Pelicans shopping Ball, Lonzo could now be joining his third team already in the NBA. The Pelicans have been relatively disappointing this season to many, as major pundits in NBA media had pinned the Pelicans as a team on the rise who will shock the league. The Pelicans currently stand at 8-12, good for 14th in the Western Conference.
With Stan Van Gundy at the helm and a team with little spacing, the Pelicans are looking to trade their point guard to help round out their team a little better. Here are three trades that I think both improve the Pelicans and give Lonzo a home where he can thrive:
Offer: Lonzo Ball, for Coby White, Cristiano Felicio, 2023 top 5 protected 1st
The Bulls have had a tough start to their season; they’re currently 8-12. The point guard rotation in Chicago consists of Coby White, Zach LaVine, Garrett Temple, and Tomas Satoransky. This is not exactly “wow” worthy. Zach LaVine is the only serviceable starter in that lineup and is much better used as a shooting guard.
With Chicago’s hands tied at the point guard, it is time for them to find a playmaker. Lonzo fits the bill. By using a 1st round pick (and Felicio as salary filler), the Bulls could upgrade from Coby White, who does not seem to fit next to LaVine, to Lonzo Ball.
Fly Over Sports Podcast: Episode 31 – Fly Over Sports Podcast
For New Orleans, Coby White gives you an offensive-minded player who will go out and give you instant offense. White can also lead the bench units relatively well and they now would have a potentially high first-rounder to use as a trade bargain.
Ball’s defensive mindset and off-ball ability fit perfectly next to LaVine and could give Chicago a dynamic pairing at the guard positions. With Chicago desperate to get their footing in the East, a move for Ball could be the move that pushes them into playoff contention.
Offer: Lonzo Ball for PJ Tucker, Bucks 2022 1st
PJ Tucker may be on the outs in Houston as the Rockets make a youth movement and the Rockets are desperate for a backup point guard. Meanwhile, the Pelicans have an abundance of ball handlers, are dealing with an unhappy Lonzo Ball, and could really use a veteran 3&D presence. Can you call this destiny?
Lonzo for PJ gets sweetened for the Pelicans with the ability to add a 1st round pick. Overall, it is about winning now or later for the Pelicans and PJ Tucker is a winner. For the Rockets, they will have a young point guard to learn from John Wall. Ball can also eventually lead the team next to Christian Wood.
Offer: Lonzo Ball, Romeo Langford, Wenyen Gabriel, 2021 1st round swap, 2022 1st round pick (top 20 protected) from Boston to Toronto; JJ Redick to Boston; Kyle Lowry to New Orleans
For New Orleans, this gives you a veteran point guard who is defensive-minded and has a LOT of playoff experience. Who better than Kyle Lowry to captain your defense if you’re Stan Van Gundy? The price may not be too high for Lowry due to the poor season the Raptors are having right now. On top of this, getting three young players and two first-round picks for Lowry would be great for Toronto.
Toronto can now pair Lonzo Ball in the backcourt with Fred VanVleet. They can also pair Ball with Anunoby for the future of the team. Acquiring additional picks, as well as Gabriel and Langford, will help Toronto as they move towards a youth movement. Ball can thrive in Toronto under the coaching of Nick Nurse and leading a defense-first team.
Boston gives up Langford who has been injured since arriving but has high potential. They also give up a protected first-rounder to acquire JJ Redick. Redick would give the Celtics instant shooting off the bench as a great juxtaposing piece to Marcus Smart. Redick’s veteran presence can also go a long way with a relatively young Celtics core.
FOR MORE CONTENT LIKE THIS:
Please follow me at @FindingNeema23 on Twitter and follow @BorderFuelHQ for more sports content!