“The teams have been working to reach an agreement with a third team that would take on Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope as part of a potentially larger deal, league sources said.
The Suns want to land a playmaking guard and a draft asset as the price of unloading Ariza, sources said. Phoenix and Los Angeles have made progress in third-team scenarios, although no agreements are close and both teams remain active in multiple trade discussions throughout the league, sources said.”
Acquiring Ariza would instantly be a boost for the Lakers this season. He is a versatile player that impacts the game and does not need the ball in his hands to do so. In case anyone is trying to figure out why the Rockets have almost lost as many games this season as they did all of last season, look no further. Not having the 3-and-D Ariza has greatly damaged the Rockets offense, defense, and floor spacing.
Ariza would give the Lakers more shooting and defense, as well as someone who would play well with LeBron James.
The issue is what it would do to the young players. Ariza would take minutes away from both Brandon Ingram and Kyle Kuzma. That has to be a concern as they are still trying to figure out how to play with LeBron. It also may, in fact, hurt their trade value if the Lakers look to make a move for Anthony Davis this summer.
If the Lakers get this trade done, they will be better next week. But will they be better long-term? No.