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The Los Angeles Lakers have spent the past half-decade or so in all-in mode. They traded a boatload of draft picks for Anthony Davis in 2019 in order to pair him with LeBron James. Ever since, the Lakers have operated as buyers. They've given up first-round picks in three separate trades (for Dennis Schroder in 2020, Russell Westbrook in 2021 and D'Angelo Russell, Jarred Vanderbilt and Malik Beasley in 2023), and they have now paid the luxury tax four seasons in a row. But ever since the 2020 championship, this approach has failed to take the Lakers back to the NBA Finals. In the past four seasons, the Lakers have made it beyond the first round only once.

This has understandably made James and Davis a bit antsy about the team's immediate prospects. James is 39 years old and eligible to become a free agent this offseason. Davis, who is under contract through the 2027-28 season, is 31 and only has so many prime years left. The Lakers have three tradable first-round picks remaining: No. 17 overall on Wednesday as well as 2029 and 2031 picks down the line. The Lakers, thus far, have hesitated to include those picks, especially the deep future selections, for short-term upgrades.

But according to The Athletic's Sam Amick, James and Davis would prefer if "the Lakers would prove their desire to win this week by going all-in for another elite player." This approach has obviously yielded mixed results in the past. Going all-in for Davis won the Lakers a championship in 2020. It also led to the disastrous Westbrook deal. During JJ Redick's introductory press conference on Monday, general manager Rob Pelinka indicated that he would be choosy on the trade market. "If the perfect trade comes along, and we can use picks to make it and win a championship, yeah, we'll do it," Pelinka said. "Is that trade going to be there? I don't know. It's harder in this system to find perfect trades."

While the widespread expectation is that James will remain with the Lakers, Amick reports that he "desperately wants to win at the highest of levels" again. If the Lakers don't make the sort of moves he and Davis are hoping for, James could opt out of the final year of his contract and pursue fits with other teams. So which players are on the table for the Lakers if they do make a serious short-term push? Here are a few that have been reported by both Amick and Yahoo's Jake Fischer:

Dejounte Murray

Both Amick and Fischer named Murray as a possible Lakers target. Los Angeles and Atlanta discussed a trade at the deadline, and Amick noted that the Lakers could have landed Murray if they had been willing to include Austin Reaves in the deal. So far, the Lakers have not relented on including Reaves, but they are actively shopping the No. 17 overall pick. Notably, making a trade for Murray before the draft would be easier for the Lakers than doing so afterwards, because Murray's contract extension kicks in when the calendar flips to July. When that happens, his $18.2 million cap figure jumps to $25.5 million. Considering how little matching salary the Lakers have to work with, that difference would be meaningful, but a deal will ultimately come down to whether or not the Lakers can meet Atlanta's asking price in terms of draft capital and player value.

Jerami Grant

Grant was a name mentioned by both Amick and Fischer, and as a Klutch client playing for a rebuilding Trail Blazers team, there's an obvious fit here. The Boston Celtics just emphasized the value of having as many two-way forwards as possible, and Grant fits the bill. However, his $29.8 million salary for next season makes him a tough contract to fit onto the Lakers' books. Getting him would mean sacrificing several role players in addition to whatever draft value the Blazers demand. But Grant has been a Lakers target since they faced him in the Orlando bubble during the 2020 playoffs, so he's a name to watch here.

Donovan Mitchell

All of the reporting lately has indicated that the Cleveland Cavaliers expect Donovan Mitchell to re-sign this offseason. That isn't final, but his availability is no longer the certainty it seemed like it might be earlier in the year. However, Mitchell is notable as a measuring stick here. Given the players both the Lakers as a team as well as the James-Davis duo have targeted, Mitchell is the sort of player that this front office would probably truly go all-in for. Austin Reaves, Rui Hachimura, all of their draft capital, he is someone that satisfies all parties here. He's good enough to form a star trio with James and Davis, but young enough to fit as a long-term cornerstone who could carry over into the next era of Lakers basketball. That he's even being mentioned suggests that there is a level of player that could induce the Lakers to make a truly all-in offer. We just don't know where the bar is. If Mitchell isn't available, would the Lakers go there for anyone else?

Zach LaVine

LaVine is a high-risk target given his injuries and the three years left on his max contract, but the reward is similarly enormous because of how little he would likely cost in a trade. Statistically, LaVine at his peak isn't far away from Mitchell. But in terms of asset value, LaVine could probably be had for pennies on the dollar. Nobody wants to touch LaVine's contract, so the Bulls would probably be happy just to get rid of it. He wouldn't help the Lakers defensively, but adding a three-level scorer like LaVine would go a long way on the offensive end. Matching his max salary would be painful, but if the Lakers are determined to simply add talent without compromising their future draft stash, LaVine is a possible compromise.

Miles Bridges

Amick listed Bridges as a possibility, which was a worthwhile note considering his status as a free agent. The Lakers will not be a cap space team, so they cannot sign Bridges outright for the price he is expected to command. Therefore, Bridges would need a sign-and-trade to get to Los Angeles, and that would hard cap the Lakers at the first apron (projected between $178-179 million). If the Lakers are willing to take on that hard cap for Bridges, it's worth considering other free agents, like Los Angeles-native DeMar DeRozan.

Jonas Valanciunas

Valanciunas is the cheapest player in this group. He is a free agent like Bridges, so the Lakers could freely sign him using a mid-level exception depending on how else their team salary shakes out. If Valanciunas wants starter money, though, the Lakers would have to work with the Pelicans on a sign-and-trade. That would create the same issues a Bridges pursuit would. Their interest in Valanciunas is a sign that the Lakers are preparing to play Davis as a power forward more often, though, which has been his preference in the past.