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Anthony Davis requests trade - Warriors aren’t interested... for now

Davis wants out , Lakers assumed preferred destination?

We’ve got a Woj bomb alert!

Early this morning, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN broke the news that New Orleans superstar, Anthony Davis has formally requested a trade. Davis is one of the best players in the NBA, and at just 25 years old is one of the premier player targets for pretty much any team in the league. Any team that is, except for the Golden State Warriors - at least right now.

While Davis has long been rumored to be on the Warriors long-term radar, the timing of this news pretty much rules out Golden State as a potential destination - for now.

Whether the Warriors would blow up their core on purpose just to chase Davis is an interesting question. However, given the uncertainty of the league, this decision may be made for them if some of our key free agents (like Klay Thompson and Kevin Durant) decide to go elsewhere in the upcoming offseason. For now though? The team is content to stand pat. As they should.

Where’s he going to go?

The burning question now is where exactly Davis will end up. Speculation was rampant this summer that he was going to end up in Los Angeles alongside Lebron James. Davis, who changed agents this summer and is now under the same representation as James would obviously be a huge improvement over what they have their now.

Given the language of the trade demand, it seems like there are only a bare handful of teams that would serve as a favorable destination. Davis, who will become a free agent after the season, holds all the cards here. He can hold that extension over any potential trade partner as leverage - sure anyone could make the trade, but without guarantee of him staying long-term it doesn’t make sense for less desirable destination to come to hard with their offers.

Ironically, if the Lakers and Pelicans do trade - it would reunite a lot of the young core back together (assuming the Pelicans hang on to Julius Randle, this would basically be the Lakers core from a year ago plus Jrue Holiday).

The Boston Celtics are out. Due to some weird NBA rules, they are prohibited from getting involved.

So who else does it leave, besides the Lakers?

A team with another young superstar would seem to meet Davis’ needs. The Milwaukee Bucks, Denver Nuggets, and Philadelphia 76ers all have enough youthful talent to entice, but as with any trade, we’ll really have to see the offers to understand what will be left to pair with Davis.

Everyone is going to make calls on this. Talent like Davis’ doesn’t come around very often, and it’s even more rare for them to be poised to sign a long-term deal with a new team after a trade. Players like Paul George and Kawhi Leonard have been moved without guarantees, so any destination is really possible here.

Making a demand in public like this is a dangerous game. On the one hand, it immediately puts everyone on notice, but it is also tremendously problematic for his current team. Regardless though, free agency is an important right that NBA players have fought hard for over the years. Kevin Durant, no stranger to high-pressure free agency moments himself, put it all in perspective.

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