With $18 million this year, Luol Deng is the highest-paid player of the Los Angeles Lakers. But, he scores only 8.1 points (lowest in career) with 5.5 rebounds and only 39% FG (lowest in career, again).
The 31-year old forward is the biggest disappointment for the Lakers (except Nick Young. We expected 30/10/10 stats) and Luke Walton could easily replace him with Brandon Ingram.
Los Angeles Lakers have 11 wins so far, but it will be very tough to play in the NBA Playoffs because Portland Trail Blazers, Oklahoma City Thunder and Utah Jazz are the better teams at this moment.
What can they lose if Brandon Ingram plays in the starting lineup? Nothing. They need to develop young players for the next season.
According to Bleacher Report, Lakers could trade Luol Deng and we may already know his next destination.
If Thibodeau was open to a reunion with Deng, perhaps he'd be willing to give up a player like Shabazz Muhammad, who will be a restricted free agent this summer. To match salaries, the 'Wolves would need to send the Lakers a player like Nikola Pekovic, who is out for yet another season with an ankle injury.
The Lakers wouldn't covet Pekovic—who may not play again in the NBA—but he is under contract for next season at $11.6 million. That's a hefty price to pay, but he's owed $42.3 million less than Deng's $54 million over the next three years.
Minnesota Timberwolves need a mature, experienced player and Luol Deng is a good fit for the young Wolves. Thibodeau already said that he wants to see an experienced player in his roster and maybe Luol Deng is a good opportunity for him.
The biggest problem for the Lakers is Deng' salary, but maybe they can find a partner until February trade deadline.