Like so many of the
The rookie forward-center had his fourth double-double of the season Thursday against the
Black plays hard, has shown toughness and makes a relatively small salary in a league in which the annual average is about $5.5 million. A no-brainer for the Lakers to bring him back at least as a reserve, no?
Black doesn't think so.
"I learned my lesson this year," he said Friday. "I was doing very well in Houston. I had one or two double-doubles there, I was backing up Dwight [Howard], started 12 games and we actually won, like, a ridiculous amount."
Life was looking up for the undrafted player out of Kansas.
"Every article was the same — 'Tarik Black is a keeper, a surprise because nobody drafted him,'" he said. "Then a situation popped up where a star free agent came up and I ended up getting waived. It's why I tend not to think about tomorrow."
Black doesn't hold any ill will toward the Rockets, he says.
Sticking with his glass-half-full outlook, he says he loves playing for the Lakers despite their shoddy record (17-50, fourth worst in the
He has been in and out of the starting lineup, most recently getting 13 points and 10 rebounds against Utah in 30 minutes as a starter.
"I'm very happy with the way I've been playing," he said. "I love this organization. I want to stay with the Lakers. But if I end up somewhere else, I'll just have to work hard there as well.
Black is one of many Lakers facing future uncertainty.
Carlos Boozer, Jeremy Lin,
Jordan Clarkson and