Latest Report on D'Angelo Russell Makes Lakers Return More Likely

The Los Angeles Lakers might be Russell's best option in free agency.
Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers are going through an offseason of changes. Their head coaching search and the future of LeBron James naturally receive the most attention, but there are questions that are waiting to be answered up and down the roster. One of those big questions is D'Angelo Russell and what happens with the All-Star guard.

Russell has an $18.7 million player option for next season. Considering that he had a solid campaign last season, he is likely to opt out and seek a longer deal with more guaranteed money. That could be with the Lakers or elsewhere. Considering the Lakers' cap situation and their desire to attract bigger fish, it was widely assumed that Russell would be gone this summer.

The latest reporting, however, suggests otherwise. According to Eric Pincus of Bleacher Report, there aren't too many teams interested in the 28-year-old. The San Antonio Spurs, who were considered a potential suitor, are reportedly not interested.

"The most recent intel suggests the San Antonio Spurs aren't interested. If Russell can't get a viable offer from the Philadelphia 76ers, Detroit Pistons, Charlotte Hornets, Oklahoma City Thunder, Toronto Raptors or Utah Jazz, he's wholly reliant on the Lakers for his payday. It just takes one, but multiple NBA sources question who would be willing to pay Russell if the Magic aren't."

Eric Pincus, Bleacher Report

There simply aren't too many teams with cap space this summer. And ones that do have cap space will likely aim for better players. Pincus suggests that the Orlando Magic are the likeliest team to make a run at Russell.

Russell in Orlando makes plenty of sense. The Magic are an excellent defensive team but need more shot creation. Russell, despite his defensive flaws, is a solid offensive creator.

If Orlando decides that they are not interested in Russell, there is a decent chance he will remain in Los Angeles. He had initially said that he expects a pay raise after his 2023-24 campaign but it looks like that might not be feasible, especially if he stays with the Lakers.

More Lakers news and rumors: