Just hours after being named the Lakers’ new President of Basketball Operations, Magic Johnson has made his first move in his new role.

The Los Angeles Lakers have traded Lou Williams to the Houston Rockets in exchange for Corey Brewer and a 2017 first-round draft pick, Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical reported Tuesday night.


With this move, Magic Johnson shipped away the team’s leading scorer while prioritizing the team’s rebuild. While Brewer will get the name recognition from the trade, the pick was the most important part of the deal for the Lakers. It’s not yet known where the pick will land, but in what is likely to be a deep draft, the Lakers should be able to snag a high quality player to add to their talented young core this summer, even if the pick is likely to fall far outside the lottery. As for Brewer, he should be able to provide veteran leadership, as well as some energy and defense, which are three qualities this team can definitely use, even in just limited minutes.

The Rockets, on the other hand, made this move as a way to help bolster what was already a potent offense. With the Lakers this season, Williams was averaging a career-high 18.6 points per game, leading the league in scoring for players coming off the bench. He now joins a backcourt that already contains Eric Gordon, who is averaging 17.2 points per game; second in the league in bench scoring. The top two likely candidates for Sixth Man of the Year are now on the same team.

More than simply Williams’ scoring average, he adds yet another weapon to a Mike D’Antoni system that plays to his strengths. The Rockets attempt by far the most three-pointers per game (39.8), but only rank 11th in the league in percentage. Williams’ 38.6 percent three-point shooting this season is higher than the Rockets’ current average of 36.4 percent, which is a plus. He is also a dangerous catch-and-shoot player, which James Harden‘s driving attack and defensive attention has made into a huge part of the Rockets offense. Willams also gives the Rockets a decent playmaker, which they can also use in addition to Harden.

This trade looks like a win for both teams. It shows that Magic Johnson has a clear vision for the direction he wants the Lakers to move towards, and it shows that Rockets GM Daryl Morey wants to capitalize on his team’s third seed standing and is continuing to look for players who fit into the offense and can help the team become even more dangerous with seven weeks remaining until playoff time.