The Los Angeles Lakers are set to make a splash on the big-man market with ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reporting they have emerged as a “strong frontrunner” to sign Andre Drummond.
Drummond, who is now a free agent, last played for the Cleveland Cavaliers on February 12 after it was confirmed he would sit out games while the franchise tried to find a trade partner for him.
That did not end up happening though, with Wojnarowski adding that Drummond “is progressing towards finalizing a decision soon” which would see him join the Lakers.
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Drummond is averaging 17.5 points, 13.5 rebounds and 2.6 assists in 25 games this season and would be a welcome addition given the defending champion’s injury woes.
Wojnarowski added that LA’s stars had been “recruiting Drummond hard” with the Cavaliers star looking at the potential of starting at centre for the Lakers if he moves.
The Lakers’ frontcourt depth is being tested without LeBron James and Anthony Davis while Marc Gasol recently missed nine-straight games due to COVID-19 protocols.
Gasol, who is currently Los Angeles’ starting centre, is averaging 4.3 points and 4.0 rebounds in 19.8 minutes.
The Knicks and Celtics were also reported to have keen interest in Drummond but the New York Post’s Marc Berman tweeted the former were not as serious for a key reason.
“Hearing Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau wasn’t big voice pushing for Andre Drummond as he likes defensive centers. So don’t expect Knicks to outbid Lakers or Celtics,” he wrote.
Meanwhile, Drummond would have likely been sharing minutes with Robert Williams and Tristan Thompson at Boston, making the Lakers more appealing.
The Celtics though also seem resigned to missing out on Drummond, with Mark Murphy of The Boston Herald tweeting earlier the franchise were expecting the Lakers to win out.