The Los Angeles Lakers are expected to splurge in next year's free agency. What the Lakers are looking for is a star player, who would join the likes of prospects Brandon Ingram and Lonzo Ball. However, to achieve this, they need to make sacrifices. That may include trading another member of their young core. D'Angelo Russell was the first one to go after he got traded to the Brooklyn Nets in June. A report by Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders suggested that the next man out is Julius Randle.

Kyler believes the Lakers will not be extending the rookie contract of Randle. He thinks that instead of doing this, they would deal him away to have more space in their salary cap.

If the franchise is going to consider this option, it means the 22-year-old's time in Los Angeles is nearing its end.

Great trade asset

Randle is still trying to find his way in the NBA, but he is already a valuable asset for Los Angeles. That is why trading him could be a walk in the park for the Lakers. In the past two seasons, the former first-round pick proved his worth to the franchise by displaying efficiency on both ends of the floor. During the 2015-16 season, he averaged 11.3 points, a career-best 10.2 rebounds, and 1.8 assists per game. Last season, his rebounding dropped (8.6 rpg), but he recorded new career-highs in scoring (13.2 ppg) and assists (3.6 apg). A lot of teams surely want to add a forward like him who is versatile and continues to get better.

NBA fines Lakers

As mentioned, Los Angeles is searching for a new star who will lead the team as it moves forward.

Unfortunately, the process is costly. The Lakers found that out Thursday after receiving a fine from the NBA worth $500,000. It was a penalty for violating the league's anti-tampering rule. According to reports, the Lakers already received a warning. However, general manager Rob Pelinka still communicated with Paul George's agent, something that is prohibited since George is under contract with a different squad.

George, who was with the Indiana Pacers when this happened, expressed several times in the past his desire to be in Los Angeles. The 27-year-old is from Palmdale, California and is a huge fan of Lakers great Kobe Bryant. Now, George is with the Oklahoma City Thunder, though many predict him to leave after the 2017-18 season to pursue his dream of representing the Lakers. The ex-Fresno State Bulldogs has a player option next year.