In a stunning revelation made by NBA expert Smith, he says a host of senior figures are conspiring to block Davis’ exit from New Orleans Pelicans.
Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James shares the same agent, Rich Paul, with Davis.
And they have apparently been teaming up to convince the Pelicans star to force a trade move.
Pressure has reportedly been piling on Demps to set the bar too high for the Lakers so that a deal is not struck before Thursday’s deadline.
“The league, owners, management, agents, everybody is against Rich Paul and the Lakers on trying to get this done,” Smith told ESPN’s First Take.
“Even more than the Lakers because they are just a team trying to get one of the bets players.
“They are against Rich Paul and LeBron James. They think it would set a dangerous precedent if a player under contract managed to force his way out of his contractual situation.
“They don’t view it the same as Kawhi Leonard who had only played nine games.
“If this would have happened this summer with Anthony Davis coming to his last year it would have been more plausible.
“But he still has this season to go and next season. It makes them stick to their stomachs.
“If they are to pull it off I would be surprised.
“They basically put in Dell Demps’ ear ‘If you make this deal before Thursday’s deadline you will lose your job’.
“That’s the kind of word that they have put out there to install a level of fear which would make him wait until the summer.”
The Lakers launched a sixth bid for Davis last night.
Magic Johnson offered up six players and two first-round draft pick to try and land their man.
But ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski says the Pelicans want FOUR draft picks as well as the six players to make the deal work.
“Pels are waiting on Lakers to overwhelm them w/ an historic haul of picks,” he tweeted.
“To Nola, that means Lakers offering 4 first-round and second-round picks as part of a Davis package.
“Pels want to be compensated – perhaps even overcompensated – to even consider a deal with LA now.”