Lakers in review: Roy Hibbert, Brandon Bass, Lou Williams join team
After striking out on their top free-agent choices like LaMarcus Aldridge, DeAndre Jordan and Greg Monroe, the Lakers moved on to fill the roster with three experienced veterans.
First the team signed the NBA’s current sixth man of the year, guard Lou Williams for three seasons, while also giving rookie guard/forward Anthony Brown a three-year contract (with the first two seasons fully guaranteed).
Soon after, the Lakers inked forward Brandon Bass on a two-year deal. Bass can opt out after the 2015/16 campaign to once again become a free agent.
The Lakers cashed out what was roughly $25 million in cap space, taking on two-time All-Star center Roy Hibbert from the Indiana Pacers in trade. Hibbert waived over $2.2 million of his trade bonus to join the Lakers.
The NBA set the salary cap to $70 million, a jump over the league’s projection of $67.1 million, helping the Lakers to preserve an additional spending tool, their $2.8-million room exception.
The Lakers also signed their two first-round picks in D’Angelo Russell and Larry Nance Jr.
The team’s three rookies, along with returning players Julius Randle, Tarik Black, Jabari Brown and Jordan Clarkson, joined the Lakers summer league squad for games in Las Vegas.
Brown was injured in practice, knocking him out for at least the first two games with an eye injury.
Coach Byron Scott said he’s looking forward to seeing Randle back on the court, after the power forward was knocked out for the season with a broken leg suffered on opening night.
The Lakers’ back court pairing of Russell and Clarkson created some excitement in summer league. Clarkson carried much of the team’s scoring load as they split their first two games, although the team lost the opener to the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Russell was aggressive but turnover-prone the following night, while forward Nance gave the team a spark in a win over the Philadelphia 76ers, earning the fan support of the very pro-Lakers Las Vegas crowd.
Meanwhile, forward Wesley Johnson left to sign with the Clippers, Jeremy Lin joined the Charlotte Hornets, Wayne Ellington the Brooklyn Nets, Ronnie Price the Phoenix Suns, Ed Davis the Portland Trail Blazers and Jordan Hill will reportedly sign with the Pacers.
Former Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni sold his Manhattan Beach home for $9.5 million.
Finally, with DeAndre Jordan agreeing to join the Dallas Mavericks, then changing his mind to return to the Clippers, Kobe Bryant weighed in on a Twitter emoji battle
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