Rui Hachimura was a top prospect in the 2019 draft class. The 25-year-old attended Gonzaga University. The Washington Wizards drafted the Japanese player as a first-round 9th pick. Hachimura started off pretty well in his first few seasons, becoming a reliable asset for the Wizards.
His performance saw a slow decline as he entered his third season. The main reason behind it was back-to-back injuries, though Hachimura picked up quickly, and was on his original form.
In January 2023, Hachimura was traded to the Lakers in exchange for Kendrick Nunn and a few draft picks. Following this trade, Rui went on to be a great backup for the Lakers. Going into the postseason, Hachimura played his role pretty well. While the season will come to an end, teams will look to sign Hachimura, throwing in various offers.
Will Rui Hachimura leave the Los Angeles Lakers in the summer?
In 2019, Rui signed a 4-year $20.3 million rookie contract with the Washington Wizards. The guaranteed amount at the time of signing was around $9.1 million. Though after he was traded to the Lakers, the team exercised a $6.26 million option for the 2022-23 season. Following this postseason, Rui would become a restricted free agent, as the young man will have an offer coming in from the Lakers.
So far, Hachimura has been performing pretty decently for the Lakers. He has been averaging 12 points and 5 rebounds a game till now. For his potential, Rui can be much better and maybe a possible All-Star in the near future. While the Lakers are only looking for reliable players who can be of as much help alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis, so as increase their chances for a title, considering LeBron’s limited time in the league.
Playing for the Lakers for yet another season might not be a bad option for Rui after all, as the team is looking quite solid. With young players such as Austin Reaves and Lonnie Walker putting in all their efforts, the Lakers seem to have a bright future. Continuing his career with the Lakers, Hachimura will definitely grab more experience and understand his own game much better.
Though if he doesn’t wish to continue wearing purple and gold, teams like the Warriors and the Knicks would be a great fit for him. Golden State does seem to be in need of a supporting big man, and Hachimura would be a reliable option.