NBA

Lakers rumors: Rookie Cole Swider joins LA in two-way deal

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The 2022 NBA draft is over, and after acquiring a first-round second-round pick earlier in the day from the Orlando Magic, the Los Angeles Lakers used that pick to select Max Christie from Michigan State.

After that, the Lakers — along with every other Association team — quickly got to work signing undrafted free agents. Remember, Austin Reaves was found through the same pool of players after last year’s draft.

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In doing so, the Lakers filled the two two-way spots they have, reportedly signing Scotty Pippen Jr. (the NBA legend’s son) as well as Cole Swider from Syracuse (per The Athletic’s Shams Charania).

Earlier, Kyle Goon from The CO register reported that Swider was “a standout” to several people who watched his practice for the Lakers earlier in the week.

Swider is a sharp shooter, averaging 13.9 points per game in his final season with Syracuse, including a truly scorching 47.3 percent 3-point shot on 5.1 attempts per game.

Just as they changed before the start of the 2021-22 regular season, places either way could change during and after the Summer League game. Last season, Joel Ayayi filled one of those spots with Austin Reaves before the first of those two was dropped from the spot while the second was obviously promoted to the main roster. At this current point, Christie would be on the Lakers’ main roster as part of their pair of two-way spots past the 15-player limit. That could change, however, depending on how free agency and summer league play out for the team.

There were other reported signings the Lakers made in their quest to fill out their Summer League roster for their opener in the California Classic on Saturday, July 2. Most notable was the son of another NBA legend in Shareef O’Neal, who will be wearing the same colors his father wore at the peak of his career.

The Lakers may also have executed their first invite to training camp, as KRPC Houston’s Ari Alexander reports that Houston’s Fabian White Jr. to sign 10-piece deal with the team. White trained for the Lakers mid-month.

As a 6’8 striker, he will be someone to watch as the Summer League continues. White averaged a career-high 12.5 points per game in his fifth season with Houston, also averaging 5.7 rebounds and 1.4 blocks per game. He started every game this past season as his team headed to the Elite 8 at the 2022 NCAA Tournament.

It was also reported by JD Shaw from Hoops Rumors and Adam Zagoria that UConn guard RJ Cole will also join the Lakers’ Summer League roster. Cole trained for the Lakers in early June.

Cole entered the draft as a senior, measuring 6’1 as a point guard. He averaged 15.8 points and 4.1 assists in his senior season. His 3-point shooting fell short in his final season as a Huskie as he only made 33.9% of his 5.3 3-point attempts per game, however, he was a 37 shooter, 7% in his previous three seasons (with the first two at Howard University before his transfer).

Also with Christie, that brings the Lakers Summer League team’s current tally to six, with a possibility of seven if Austin Reaves returns to the show. This won’t be the end of Lakers signings, but considering they were made so quickly at the end of draft night, these names are probably the most important to watch out for as potential guys to sneak onto the Lakers master roster.

For more Lakers talk, subscribe to the Silver Screen and Roll podcast feed at itunes, Spotify, embroiderer Where Google Podcasts. You can follow Donny on Twitter at @donny_mchenry.

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