It’s not the move of the century, but it belongs to the Lakers and could have significant implications for the NBA’s most storied franchise and the rest of the league. Rui Hachimura We join Los Angeles and break down the winners and losers of this move from earlier in the week.
Rui Hachimura: Winner
It’s a small victory when a player can leave a franchise that’s between the top two in this league to join a team that’s a little dysfunctional, but where he’ll share the court with LeBron James, Russell Westbrook and Anthony Davis.
Hachimura really wanted to go to a place where we would appreciate his contribution and his style of play, he said after the game against Orlando, even after scoring 30 points off the bench. That seems to be the case because the Lakers have targeted him precisely.
Exploring Los Angeles in terms of quality of life will also be an interesting experience for her, who has only lived in Spokane (when she was at Gonzaga) and Washington, D.C. since coming to the US. Obviously not the most “American Dream” in the country. The Japanese-American community in California is also the largest in the United States, with more than 270,000 members. Pretty cool to match.
Russell Westbrook: Winner
While we envision him quickly getting traded elsewhere, Westbrook has put down roots in Los Angeles and embraced his role off the bench. The former MVP’s sense of self-sacrifice is highly valued within the franchise and we tell ourselves that even if we rely on him, we can put him in the best possible situation. Russ last made the playoffs in 2021 with Washington. With the arrival of Rui Hachimura, he sees a third
Wizards: losers, a priori
Wizards fans believe there are more interesting offers than the Lakers for Rui Hachimura and they will surely find their account before the deadline. This is certainly true. Tommy Shepperd still gives the impression of pulling the trigger at the first opportunity to get rid of a lottery pick. Not great for a photo.
Whether through trade or during the next free agency, Washington had clearly decided to let the Japanese go, and that was an admission of failure. Regaining Kendrick Nunn as a total loss (and on a 3-year deal) and three second draft rounds seems a bit light. The future will tell.
It’s unclear whether Rui Hachimura will bring much or even stay in LA for long, but the Lakers are able to sign a deal for a player who will bring them points and fresh blood without losing their most important pick. really useful player (Kendrick Nunn is a complete failure), this is obviously well received by Rob Pelinka. From there, it’s safe to say that this is a move that will completely change the Lakers’ season… Hachimura has the qualities, but not the qualities the Lakers need most, namely production and 3-point shooting.
Lakers marketing: ultra win
It doesn’t really take a push to sell Lakers jerseys and general merchandise. The same goes for seats in the Crypto.com Arena. But reaching a new fanbase can’t hurt. Rui Hachimura is a star in Japan and no doubt Japanese fans will welcome the news of his son joining the world’s most famous team. Japan is a market that still needs to be truly explored by the NBA, and there will likely be an increase in Lakers jersey sales in the Land of the Rising Sun.
Wizards Fans: Losers
Just read the tweets from @WizardsFrance since last night to get some sense of the general mood. A festival of hidden bitterness and rage.
The Wizards got 3 second round picks in the Ruin trade.
Great news, we’ll be able to choose no name and/or transfer the sole drink directly to another team for 10 years. pic.twitter.com/N6AgWCYlEn
— Wizards France (@WizardsFrance) January 24, 2023
Congratulations, you’re officially 22,000 people making fun of us on a daily basis for our wooden players and disastrous management.
— Wizards France (@WizardsFrance) January 23, 2023
Kendrick Nunn: winner
Poor Nunn was nicknamed Kendrick Null on Twitter after an injury-plagued season, and somewhere else we think we’re seeing a distant cousin of a highly promising player who appeared on the Bulls a few years back. We imagine a change of scenery, away from the pressures of LA, can only be a good thing for her.
Deni Avdija: winner… and loser?
In summary, the Wizards have a choice between their last two lottery picks. We’re not going to lie to each other, we’d pick Dani Avdija, who is a better finisher than Rui Hachimura, but has better potential as a playmaker and excellent defender. The Israeli should be happy to know that the franchise is counting on him. But at the same time, with the previous ones, seeing how it ended with Hachimura at the helm, is being a Wizards lottery pick too comforting?
Kyle Kuzma: The winner
It’s clear the Wizards want to give Kyle Kuzma cash and a duplicate franchise key. I’m not sure this is the best idea in the world, as the former Laker is a quality trade asset thanks to his good season, but we’re going for it.
Washington will try to offer him a contract extension to convince him to sign long-term. Kuzman has a player option in 2023, so there is a risk that the strategy will fail and Kuzman will be a free agent at the end of the season.
Either way, the player is a winner because he has an important arm with two fairly satisfying options: become one of the team’s stars with a strong revalued salary, or leave for a slightly more competitive team.
Izakaya Seki: Loser
Washington’s best traditional Japanese restaurant is about to lose its 75-year-old chef and its most loyal and regular customer. If you happen to pass by the federal capital and are looking for a discreet but very good place, you can have your eyes closed.
Shams Charania: winner
Shams Charania almost won the race against the game master. Shams first reported that a trade with the Lakers around Rui Hachimura was nearing completion. Then, three seconds before the master, the exact contents of the package appeared. There are no small victories.
If I were an NBA source, I’d put Woj and Shams on a group chat, message them at the same time, and see who gets the word out faster. pic.twitter.com/Z3BDFiLt4m
— boost your enthusiasm 🇷🇸 (@markocantdunk) January 23, 2023