While most of today’s Los Angeles Lakers rumors have involved LeBron James, another free agent the team may be targeting is DeMarcus Cousins.
The Ringer’s Kevin O’Connor reported that it is “increasingly likely” that the Lakers will pursue Cousins. He would likely take a short-term max contract and could play a huge role next to James, especially if Oklahoma City Thunder wing Paul George does not sign with the Lakers.
Tim Bontemps recently listed the Lakers as a potential home for the four-time All-Star (via Washington Post):
“[DeAndre] Jordan going to Dallas, coupled with the Phoenix Suns taking DeAndre Ayton with the top pick in the draft, leaves Cousins in the very precarious position of having no obvious home when the calendar flips to July… Perhaps the Los Angeles Lakers will be willing to toss him a lucrative one-year deal if they strike out on all of their free agent targets.”
It’s worth mentioning that this momentum is picking up, too. Someone outside of his inner circle who knows how James thinks is former Cleveland Cavaliers general manager David Griffin.
Griffin, who was an executive for the Cavaliers from 2010 until 2017, spoke about the free agency decisions the Lakers will have to make. According to Griffin, the four-time NBA MVP believes “a great deal” in New Orleans Pelicans big man DeMarcus Cousins.
During his appearance on ESPN, Griffin said that “there is a possibility” that signing Cousins would be enough to “sway the balance” and persuade James to sign with the Lakers.The center also recently unfollowed the Pelicans on Instagram:
While ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski believes it is “very likely” that Cousins will sign a two-year deal with the New Orleans Pelicans, there is still reason to believe Los Angeles could be a more appealing destination.
If both James and Cousins sign with Los Angeles, it would be a nice rotation alongside Lonzo Ball and Brandon Ingram — especially if they can bring back restricted free agent Julius Randle.