Many star players will be connected to the Los Angeles Lakers throughout the year. Kawhi Leonard has been rumored to be interested in the Lakers for quite a while. However, not many would consider Anthony Davis (AD) being on that list as well. Rich Paul could be the difference maker.
According to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst and Ramona Shelburne, Davis fired agent Thad Foucher. Rich Paul is reportedly the leading candidate to become Davis’s new agent. Paul is most notably known as the agent who represents LeBron James, Ben Simmons, and John Wall. If Paul gets hired, he could potentially sway Davis to join the Los Angeles Lakers.
Paul has a history of having more than one client play together. When the Lakers signed LeBron James, they also re-signed Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (who is also a client of Paul) to a one year deal worth $12 million. People around the league can see the package deal that transpired. One year ago, the Lakers overpaid Caldwell-Pope with one year deal worth $18 million.
By taking care of Paul’s client twice put him in the Lakers in good favor with Paul. Connections matter in the NBA and the Lakers made strategic moves that make sense today. Not only did signing a two-way player give the roster a boost, it also boosted the relationship between LeBron’s camp and the organization.
AD is scheduled to be a free agent in 2020 and there is no reason to think the Lakers won’t be a possible destination. Like other superstars, he has the option to exercise a contract extension worth $28.7 million. The top players in the league make well over $30 million a year. AD will be aware of that and wisely decline the player option.
The Lakers already appear to be an excellent destination by having LeBron James, veteran role players, and a young core as well. Not to mention an opportunity to add a superstar next summer. Recently, the Lakers finally waived Luol Deng and now have $38 million in cap space. They will have the opportunity to sign Jimmy Butler or even Klay Thompson.
Even if they miss out on any superstars next summer, they can always save cap space and sign one-year deals again. Worst case scenario, the Lakers will have even more cap space to sign AD in 2020. Rich Paul may not be the only factor in where AD will choose to stay. Nevertheless, once he is hired as his agent, the Lakers will in position to stack their roster with a top three player.