Wizards trade Hachimura to Lakers for Nunn, picks
Los Angeles will part with a 2023 second-rounder originally belonging to the Chicago Bulls, the less favorable second-round pick in 2028 between the Lakers and Wizards, and Los Angeles' own selection in 2029, sources told ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski (the Orlando Magic are currently slated to receive the better 2028 second-rounder between the two teams, courtesy of RealGM).
"We are excited to welcome Rui and his family to the Los Angeles Lakers," Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka said in a statement. "Adding both size and depth to the wing position has been a goal, and the chance to accomplish that by acquiring a player with Rui's two-way skills and upside was an opportunity that doesn't present itself often."
Hachimura, the ninth overall pick in 2019, is coming off a 30-point, five-rebound performance in Saturday's win against the Magic. He shot 13-of-22 from the floor, including 3-of-5 from deep. On the season, the Japanese big man is averaging 13 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 1.2 assists and shooting 33.7% on threes in 30 appearances off the bench.
Following Washington's victory over Orlando, Hachimura suggested he would be open to a move elsewhere after four seasons in D.C. but stopped short of confirming whether he specifically requested a trade.
"I just want to be somewhere that wants me as a basketball player, and I want to be somewhere that likes my game," the Gonzaga product said Saturday, according to The Associated Press' Noah Trister.
Nunn missed all of last season due to a knee injury but has played in 39 games this year for L.A., averaging 6.7 points and 1.4 rebounds. He fared slightly better over his last nine appearances, averaging 11.2 points, 2.3 rebounds, and one assist per contest, highlighted by a 23-point showing in a win over the Atlanta Hawks on Jan. 6.
The Lakers are 22-25 but only one game out of the play-in tournament and two games out of a top-six seed, which would advance them directly to the first round. They have won eight of their last 12 and are reportedly close to getting back star big man Anthony Davis, who has been out since Dec. 16 with a stress injury in his right foot.
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