Luol Deng Trade: Los Angeles Lakers Must Sacrifice This Valuable Asset to Complete Deal

By Nikko Villanueva, Posted: 06/15/17 06:35AM EDT

A Luol Deng trade is expected to be pursued by the Los Angeles Lakers this offseason. Deng has a hefty contract that is a burden to Los Angeles' salary cap. Unfortunately for the Lakers, they might need to sacrifice more assets before they can part ways with him. 

In July of 2016, Deng headed to Los Angeles following an impressive season with the Miami Heat. The Lakers granted him a four-year deal worth $72 million. They hoped he was going to perform the same way he did in South Beach while leading the youngsters on the team. Sadly, none of these materialized during the 2016-17 NBA regular season. 

Deng struggled and in the last games of the season was ruled out to give way for the budding talents on the roster. In 56 games (49 starts), the 32-year-old tallied some of the worst numbers in his career. 

It seems like Deng would be an on- and off-court liability moving forward if he stays in Los Angeles. That is why he is believed to be a trade piece for the Lakers. 

However, trading Deng alone might not work out for Los Angeles. What team would want to complete an exchange for an aging forward who has a pricey deal and is coming off a horrible year? 

This is the reason why one NBA executive suggested for the Lakers to include a lottery pick to make a Deng trade appealing. The suggestion is an interesting option for the purple and gold franchise.

Despite this, a report by Lakers Nation stated that a lottery pick might be too much. It was proposed that if the goal is to get rid of Deng's contract, Los Angeles must wait until next year since "that would lower the financial commitment" by the team interested in trading for him. 

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