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Lakers pick up forward Julius Randle’s third-year option

Lakers forward Julius Randle backs in against Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green during a preseason game in October 2014.

Lakers forward Julius Randle backs in against Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green during a preseason game in October 2014.

(Alex Gallardo / Associated Press)

On Thursday, the Lakers picked up the third-year option on the contract of forward Julius Randle.

Randle’s $3.3-million salary for the 2016-17 season is now fully guaranteed. The team also has an option next summer on his $4.1-million salary for 2017-18.

The Lakers selected Randle with the seventh overall pick in the 2014 NBA draft. The Kentucky forward suffered a broken leg on opening night of his rookie season, ultimately missing the entire year.

Now healthy, Randle is projected to start for the Lakers this season as he has through five preseason games, averaging 12.8 points, 6.0 rebounds and 3.0 assists.

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The Lakers now have just $23.1 million in committed salaries for 2016-17.

Including a $1.2-million charge for future restricted free agent Jordan Clarkson, the Lakers project to have up to $62 million in cap space to spend on free agency.

The team hopes center Roy Hibbert, in the final year of his deal, will earn a new contract (and thus take up a portion of that cap space).

Other Lakers locked in for next year include Lou Williams, Nick Young, D’Angelo Russell, Larry Nance Jr. and Anthony Brown. Veteran Brandon Bass holds a player option on his $3.1-million salary, which would reduce the Lakers’ spending power should he decide to return for another season.

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Email Eric Pincus at eric.pincus@gmail.com and follow him on Twitter @EricPincus.


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