Report: L.A. Lakers to 'aggressively pursue' Hassan Whiteside in free agency

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Kevin Durant has garnered the vast majority, if not all the attention with free agency on the horizon, and the 2014 MVP is without question the hottest name on the market.

Unfortunately, not every franchise is in with a shot of landing the Oklahoma City Thunder superstar and the franchises that are not likely to find themselves in title contention will have to aim a little lower.

But, that doesn't mean there isn't plenty of talent to covet in free agency. Top talents like DeMar DeRozan, Dwight Howard, Al Horford and Hassan Whiteside could still make a massive impact on any organisation that lands them.

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According to Marc Stein and Ramona Shelburne of ESPN, the L.A. Lakers plan to 'aggressively pursue' the latter.

The report read: "With rim protection and perimeter shooting ranking as the Lakers' foremost areas of concern heading into the open market, sources told that Whiteside has emerged as a priority target for L.A.

" reported earlier this week that the Dallas Mavericks also intend to be a serious suitor for Whiteside, with Dallas expected to land one of the first recruiting meetings Whiteside conducts in the opening hours of free agency. The Portland Trail Blazers are another team that has been linked with Whiteside, and there will surely be others."

It would be a formidable acquisition for the Lakers to capture the man who finished third in the Defensive Player of the Year voting. According to, the Purple and Gold were dead last in defensive efficiency last season and gave up 106.9 points per game.

Whiteside averaged 14.8 points, 11.8 rebounds and a league-leading 3.7 blocks per game last season whereas the Lakers pivot Roy Hibbert, who earned just over 15-times more than Whiteside last season, registered averages of 5.9 points a night with 1.4 blocks and 4.9 rebounds.

Kobe Bryant
LA Lakers
Pacific Division
Western Conference
Dwyane Wade
Miami Heat
Southeast Division
Eastern Conference

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