NBA Offseason trades leave fans excited


AP Photo | Kyusung Gong

Vasileios Michaelides

The NBA season is approaching which means fans are starting to get those early pre- season jitters. Before the season starts, fans and media members alike are still processing the new signings and trades that took place this offseason.

The biggest move of the summer was made by the Los Angeles Lakers. The purple and gold traded for all-star guard Russell Westbrook from the Washington Wizards, as reported by ESPN’s Adrain Wojnarowksi.

In exchange for Westbrook, the Wizards received Kyle Kuzma, Montrezl Harrell, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and the 22nd pick in this year’s draft that took place last month. The Lakers, besides Westbrook, also received two second round picks in 2024 and 2028. The Lakers now have three stars, LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Westbrook, all on the same team under the bright lights of Staples Center.

Even though the three look good on paper, whether or not they can all play together is a different concern. However, adding a former MVP to such a squad will benefit the Lakers more than it will hurt them, as Westbrook can take the load off of LeBron and Davis.

Having Westbrook to pick up the slack when Davis or LeBron need time to rest is a massive plus for the former champions. Furthermore, playing with one of his best friends and competing for the title may bring out the best in Westbrook.

The next best move that happened this summer went down in the Windy City. The Chicago Bulls got two deals done that landed them Lonzo Ball and DeMar DeRozan from the New Orleans Pelicans and the San Antonio Spurs, respectively.

The Bulls had arguably one of the best offseasons in the NBA this past summer.

The additions of Lonzo and DeMar to established players like Zach LaVine and Nikola Vucevic is a step in the right direction for a Bulls franchise that has struggled over the past half-decade but won’t allow the Bulls to jump into the top of the Eastern Conference.With DeRozan and LaVine’s athleticism, Lonzo’s passing ability, and Vucevic low post play, Bulls fans are hopeful for the first time in a while.

Other teams that improved this offseason include the New York Knicks who re-signed many key pieces likeDerrick Rose, Alec Burks and Nerlens Noel.The Knickerbockers also made some interesting trades through Kemba Walker and Evan Fournier.

The Knicks have kept last year’s core together, allowing for continuity in the squad while also dealing with the team’s shortcomings. Even the neophytes, Quentin Grimes and Deuce McBride may push for hefty minutes given the chance thanks to their defensive prowess.

Further down the line in the Eastern Conference lies the Miami Heat. Pat Riley’s team vastly improved their roster and are readying up for a season of redemption.

The Heat did not have the same aura and bite last season as they did the season prior when they made it all the way to the Finals. However, this year things may be different as Kyle Lowry joins from Toronto in a sign and trade while Jimmy Butler readies himself for another championship run. Miami will be an interesting team to keep an eye on this year as some fans have overlooked them due to last season’s underwhelming performances.

A special mention also has to go out to the Detroit Pistons and the Cleveland Cavaliers who drafted two of the best players to come out of college in a while in Cade Cunningham and Evan Mobley respectively.

Detroit got themselves a 6’8” point guard. A guard that size will prove to be immensely versatile for the Pistons. Cunningham will be able to unlock many different styles of play for the Pistons on both sides of the ball. First and foremost, at his size, Cunninghamcan guard almost anyone out on the perimeter. His size and length will also make him a problem on the offensive side of the ball. Look for Cunningham to have a monster rookie season in the Motor City.

Until the season starts, these drafts are enough to tie fans over as they wait eagerly to see how these drafts will play out.