“I think, with Talen, obviously he did not get to where everyone wanted him to be that quickly,” one Western Conference coach told Sean Deveney. “But he is 21 years old. He is playing for the Lakers and development is not the biggest thing there. Every season he has been in the league, there has been COVID and the bubble and something that has gotten in the way of him making steps. But I think most of us would take him on our team in a minute. He is big (6-foot-4) and long, he can handle the ball, he can initiate the offense, he will be a good defender even if he is not there yet. He has value.”
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The Lakers were resistant to offering their 2027 first-round pick — the only one they can offer — in trade talks, including as the carrot in a potential exchange of John Wall and Russell Westbrook, sources say. A deal I’d have pitched: Westbrook, Talen Horton-Tucker and that 2027 first-rounder for Wall and Eric Gordon. Does that change your life? Maybe not. But LeBron is 37, and this team looks broken. Maybe a better deal will come along in the offseason.
As it turns out, fans are going to be a lot more disappointed given the recent report that the Lakers were working on a monster deal that would have sent Russell Westbrook, Talen Horton-Tucker and a future first-round pick to the Houston Rockets for John Wall and Christian Wood.
Michael Grange: Hate to be the bringer of cold water, but my sense from a couple of different sources is the possibility/likelihood of reported Raptors-Knicks-Lakers deal and Toronto ending up with Noel/Talen Horton-Tucker is slim. Some dialogue, for sure, but seriousness? “Mild”.
The Los Angeles Lakers have been aggressive in their pursuit of Cam Reddish as the trade deadline approaches, and members of the Knicks organization have been doing their due diligence on Goran Dragic as the teams talk about potential trades, per SNY sources. One deal that had been discussed leading up to Thursday was a three-team trade involving Nerlens Noel and Talen Horton-Tucker to the Toronto Raptors, Reddish and Alec Burks to Los Angeles, and Dragic and draft compensation to New York, SNY sources confirm.
Aaron Rose: Brian Windhorst is reporting on Get Up that the Lakers did have talks with multiple teams about moving Talen Horton-Tucker. Didn’t mention the Raptors.
The Los Angeles Lakers, New York Knicks, and Toronto Raptors discussed a three-team trade at length Wednesday night into Thursday morning. The framework would send Cam Reddish and Alec Burks to the Lakers, Goran Dragic and draft pick compensation to the Knicks, and Talen Horton-Tucker and Nerlens Noel to the Raptors, league sources told HoopsHype. Kendrick Nunn was also mentioned as a potential addition to the trade talks, sources said. With New York trading away three rotation players in the proposal, one potential hangup in the trade discussion centers on the draft pick compensation for the Knicks. Toronto discussed sending a first-round pick, and the Lakers discussed sending a second-round pick to the Knicks, HoopsHype has learned. As conversations continued, the Knicks sought additional draft compensation.
Jake Fischer: Toronto appeared quite active in trade conversations Wednesday night. Various Goran Dragic scenarios. Bigs. Lakers and Raptors have discussed Talen Horton-Tucker, sources said, but any notion that deal is serious has been miscategorized by @TheSteinLine and my listeners.
Spencer Dinwiddie is available in Washington and a Horton-Tucker/draft pick package could be enough to entice a Wizards team with interest in offloading Dinwiddie’s contract. Orlando’s Terrence Ross is another option.
Dan Woike: League insiders have indicated that Talen Horton-Tucker and perhaps the team’s 2027 first-round pick are on the table at the deadline. But my sources tell me the appetite for Horton-Tucker is low, with one experienced league source even calling the 21-year-old a player with a “bad contract.” The Lakers owe THT $10.3 million next season before he has a player option for $11 million in 2023-24.
The most likely outcome for the Lakers is that they stand pat with their current roster through Thursday’s deadline. But if they make a trade, it would likely be in the form of moving Horton-Tucker and/or Nunn for a more impactful two-way player, according to league sources.
The issue for the Lakers is finding players that fit the criteria. There aren’t many productive role players on midsized contracts available. The trade market for Horton-Tucker has also significantly cooled since last season, according to league sources.
Harrison Faigen: .@TheSteinLine’s @SpotifyGrnroom sessions are always full of trade scuttlebutt (his Substack subscribers can get recordings) and the latest was no exception. Here was what Marc had to say on a few notable Lakers topics:
Now that the Lakers are looking to improve their roster ahead of the trade deadline, Horton-Tucker is viewed by other teams as a marginal asset.
Yahoo Sports’ Chris Haynes reported on his Posted Up podcast (28:40 mark): “League sources have told me the Lakers have reached out to the Kings about a Talen Horton-Tucker package for Hield. Still trying to make that happen. Obviously the Kings are like, ‘No. We feel like there’s more lucrative deals out there.’ The Kings are going to be active. They’ve got a whole bunch of people calling them.”
Having said that, the Lakers, who are sitting at 23-24 and in eighth place in the West, need to shake up this roster. They’re calling teams offering a future first, Kendrick Nunn, and Talen Horton-Tucker, who has underwhelmed this season, and no one is biting yet.
That 2027 first is clearly the most valuable trade asset that the Lakers currently possess. The Lakers have tried, with no luck yet, to package that pick with Talen Horton-Tucker and Kendrick Nunn in an attempt to acquire Jerami Grant from Detroit.
The Lakers are trying to find help, though their option appear limited. According to people with knowledge of the situation, the team is shopping 21-year-old Talen Horton-Tucker in trade discussions. Rival general managers believe the Lakers value Horton-Tucker, but they lack the mid-range contracts needed to put together a deal to upgrade their roster and understand no significant trade is getting made without him.
Jordan Schultz: Talen Horton-Tucker has become a trade target of as many as seven teams, league sources say. It will take “a lot” to get him though, I’m told. #Lakers, who really value THT, are hesitant. He just turned 21 and is averaging a career-best 11 PPG, 5 RPG and 3 assists.
The Lakers, remember, face such severe financial restrictions that re-signing Dennis Schröder might be the splashiest move they can make this offseason. If they prove willing to trade Kyle Kuzma or even Talen Horton-Tucker to push those limits, that’s still not going to get them into Simmons territory. To be clear: I don’t see Lakerland as a good landing spot for Simmons even if they had the means to make it happen. Although Simmons and the Sixers both badly need a fresh start because of all the swirling angst from this season’s unhappy ending and years of frustration building up to it, asking Simmons try to rebuild his game and self-confidence in the league’s most withering spotlight seems particularly unwise.
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May 20, 2022 | 7:27 pm EDT Update
The Lakers appear poised to make a decision on their coaching position soon, with Milwaukee Bucks assistant Darvin Ham, Golden State Warriors assistant Kenny Atkinson and former Portland Trail Blazers coach Terry Stotts the finalists for the job that became vacant when Frank Vogel was fired at season’s end. But as the final round of interviews is set, sources tell The Athletic that Ham appears to have made the strongest impression yet.
In terms of the Lakers’ preferences, sources say team officials have prioritized a coach who can command respect and authority from the locker room and who has a strong enough presence and voice to manage the varying roles and relationships across the roster. Those characteristics bode well for Ham’s candidacy. Throughout assistant coaching stops with the Lakers, Hawks and Bucks, Ham has been known for his no-nonsense style and ability to resonate with his players — attributes that have stood out in his communication with the Lakers thus far as well, sources said.
Ham, who played in eight NBA seasons from 1996 to 2008, is the only former NBA player among the three finalists. Even before he reached the NBA, however, Ham’s reputation as a force of nature was cemented when he broke the backboard while dunking during his 1996 NCAA Tournament run with Texas Tech. Ham, Stotts and Atkinson are in consideration for the Charlotte Hornets vacancy as well. Ham is also a serious candidate for the Hornets, according to sources.
All three finalists will soon meet with top Lakers officials — including owner Jeanie Buss — in Los Angeles for the next in-person stage, sources said. So far, Lakers vice president of basketball operations Rob Pelinka, director of basketball affairs Kurt Rambis, vice president of research and development Joey Buss and assistant general manager Jesse Buss have led the first stage of coaching interviews.
Michael Singer: Not entirely surprising, but #Nuggets president Tim Connelly’s been radio silent with a lot of people close to him. I strongly believe he doesn’t want to leave Denver, and I also think he’d stay if the Kroenkes could make him a competitive offer.
Callie Caplan: Most active and agile I’ve seen Tim Hardaway Jr. since he fractured his left foot on this same court, under this basket, 5 days short of 4 months ago. pic.twitter.com/DA6Colq97I