The reason the additions of Serge Ibaka and P.J. Tucker have the potential to be so impactful are because they will give Toronto more options for combating the LeBron-related headaches that pop up not only game to game in playoff series, but possession to possession.
A return to some imagined essential Lakers-ness will not save the Lakers: competence will.
While the 76ers, Kings, Pacers, Bulls and Pistons were the biggest losers of the deadline, the winners were Nerlens Noel, the Rockets, Raptors and Hornets.
The Thunder had been looking for ways to add depth up front and to add more shooting around Russell Westbrook. They accomplished both of those objectives with this trade and didnít have to give up a significant rotation piece to do so.
With P.J. Tucker, the Raptors acquired a very good and versatile defender who will also help their spacing while also improving their ability to play small to finish games.