Jimmy Butler appears like he’ll seriously consider joining the Lakers.
The 29-year-old wing “has interest in being” the Lakers’ third star, according to a report from Bleacher Report, which cites unidentified league sources. Butler would even be open to accepting “slightly less than” a max deal with Los Angeles, the report says.
Butler began the season with the Timberwolves before he was dealt to the 76ers in mid-November. He averaged 18.2 points and 5.3 rebounds while shooting 33.8% from 3-point range in 55 regular season games with Philadelphia.
The 76ers are hoping to re-sign Butler while the Rockets will push to acquire him in a sign-and-trade, according to ESPN. The Nets reportedly want to sign him, as well.
“Hopefully I’ll get a max contract anywhere I choose to go,” Butler told reporters about his free agency last month. “You always want to be able to win, I think that’s key for sure. You’re looking at coaches, you’re looking at the city. There’s a lot that goes into it.”
The Lakers, meanwhile, completed one of the biggest trades in NBA history earlier this month when they acquired Anthony Davis from the Pelicans in exchange for Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Josh Hart and three first round picks.
Los Angeles then cleared cap space for a third max player — LeBron James has at least two more seasons left on his contract with the team — after it reportedly agreed to send Mo Wagner, Jemerrio Jones and Isaac Bonga, along with a 2022 second-round pick, to the Wizards on Thursday.
The Lakers are also reportedly considering pursuing Kyrie Irving, Kemba Walker, D’Angelo Russell and Kawhi Leonard.
Los Angeles may elect to add multiple role players, instead, and have been linked to Patrick Beverley, Enes Kanter, Danny Green, Terrence Ross as well as Seth Curry, amongst others.
The Lakers are “the most likely” landing spot for Carmelo Anthony, as well.