NBA general manager reveals Lakers’ first contract: Superstar from Nuggets

Eastern Conference general manager says Lakers should go after Michael Porter Jr.

In both of the last two postseasons, the Denver Nuggets have knocked out the Los Angeles Lakers. While many of the playoff games between the two teams were competitive for long stretches, the actual results weren’t. Denver swept the Lakers in last year’s Western Conference Finals, and it dispatched them four games to one in the first round this year.

Other than Jamal Murray, the Denver player who hurt L.A. the most is forward Michael Porter Jr. While he averaged 16.7 points a game during the regular season this year, he put up 22.8 points per game while shooting 55.3% from the field and 48.8% from 3-point range in the playoffs versus LeBron James and crew.

The Lakers need a reinforcement or two in order to go from a playoff team to a legitimate championship contender. There has been lots of talk that they will go after an upgrade in the backcourt, such as Donovan Mitchell or Trae Young.

One Eastern Conference general manager feels L.A. should go in a different direction. He said the team should target Porter this offseason.

Via Heavy Sports:

“If they want to get better, that is who they’d go after,” one Eastern Conference GM told Heavy Sports. “They need a gunner who is not afraid to shoot and they’d be much better off if he can be a 3-4 like LeBron, if he is not a size mismatch. A knockdown shooter who creates space, that’s the first step to getting them back to contender status again.”

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While the Lakers shot a high percentage from downtown for a good portion of the season (they finished eighth in 3-point accuracy for the regular season), they were 28th in 3-point attempts. While no one thinks they should suddenly become a high-volume 3-point shooting team, they do need more players who can make it rain on the regular from beyond the arc.

Porter has a career 3-point accuracy of 41.0% percent on 5.9 attempts per game, so he could help with that. However, it should be pointed out that the 6-foot-10 25-year-old mustered just 10.7 points a contest on 37.1% overall shooting and 32.5% from downtown in the Nuggets’ second-round loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves.

A big thing to remember is the fact that he will make nearly $36 million next season, so his price would be steep for the Lakers. If they were to trade for them, they would be left with scant assets to secure an upgrade at the guard spot.

Plus, does anyone really believe the Nuggets, who spent lots of time after winning the NBA championship last season throwing shade at the Lakers, are willing to deal with the Lakers in good faith?

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