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Lakers get in draft, acquire 35th pick in trade with Orlando

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Los Angeles Lakers will get to participate in the NBA draft after acquiring the 35th overall pick from the Orlando Magic on Thursday for cash and a future second-round selection.

The Magic will get either the Lakers' second-round pick or Washington's second-round pick, which is controlled by the Lakers, in the 2028 draft.

The deal allows the Lakers to buy their way back into the current draft after the club traded away both of its picks. Los Angeles' eighth overall pick belongs to New Orleans as part of the Pelicans' mammoth haul from the trade of Anthony Davis, while the Lakers' second-round pick was moved in that same multi-team deal to Washington before eventually ending up with San Antonio.

Orlando still holds the first and 32nd overall selections in Thursday’s draft.

The Lakers' perpetual win-now mentality around LeBron James has left them without control of their own first-round pick for the fourth consecutive season, but their acquisition of this high second-round pick will allow their strong scouting department to make a contribution to that quest.

The franchise has a solid record of drafting good players and signing quality undrafted talent over the past decade despite meager draft resources. The Lakers have picked up Kyle Kuzma, Ivica Zubac, Talen Horton-Tucker, Alex Caruso, Svi Mykhailiuk and Austin Reaves from the lower reaches of the draft pools over the past six years.

Los Angeles is in need of low-cost roster depth after finishing 33-49 and missing the play-in tournament this year. If Russell Westbrook exercises his $47 million player option, the Lakers will be above the salary cap from their commitments to James, Davis and Westbrook alone.


AP Basketball Writer Tim Reynolds contributed to this report.


More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/hub/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

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The Milwaukee Bucks capitalized on a rare opportunity to pick in the first round of the draft by taking NBA G League Ignite wing MarJon Beauchamp with the 24th overall selection. The 6-foot-6 Beauchamp averaged 15.1 points for the Ignite this season. That was the latest step in a circuitous path to the NBA that included stops at four different high schools and Yakima Valley College. Beauchamp shapes up to be the first opening-round pick the Bucks have kept beyond draft night since taking Donte DiVincenzo 17th overall in 2018.

The Denver Nuggets selected Kansas guard Christian Braun with the 21st pick of the NBA draft. The 6-foot-6 Braun averaged 14.1 points and 6.5 rebounds for the Jayhawks last season. His 12 points and 12 rebounds helped Kansas beat North Carolina in the national championship game on April 4. He played the entire game. This is the first draft with general manager Calvin Booth as the primary decisionmaker for Denver. The Nuggets also acquired the rights to the 30th pick and final pick of the first round, UCLA freshman Peyton Watson from Oklahoma City.

The Minnesota Timberwolves have added a potential rim protector to complement star Karl-Anthony Towns with the acquisition of 7-foot-1 Auburn center Walker Kessler. The Timberwolves sent the No. 19 pick to Memphis for a pair of first-rounders. The first one became Kessler. He won two national defensive player of the year awards for the Tigers last season. The second pick was packaged to Houston for the rights to Duke's Wendell Moore Jr. Moore was the second-leading scorer for the Blue Devils on their way to the Final Four.

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