After signing Dennis Schröder to a minimum veteran contract, the Lakers still have a roster spot for the 2022-23 season barring any other major moves over the next week.
During the first episode of the Cole Swider show, Swider – who currently has a two-way contract with the Lakers – said he had seen significant interest from free agents trying to join the Lakers before camp. training because several of them showed up. at the team’s training center:
“Training camp is coming up, we have two open spots on the roster and everybody in the league wants to play for the Lakers. So we’re bringing in all these guys for free agent workouts and stuff like that. So when they see two spots open on the Lakers roster, a lot of people are interested, playing with Lebron, playing on that stage.
(Note: This episode came out before Schröder was signed, which is why Swider says the Lakers still have two spots on the roster.)
The good news for Lakers fans is that the front office seems to have the right archetype in mind for the No. 1 player. 15. As reported by Michael Scotto of HoopsHypethe Lakers have brought in at least four wings for practice: Jeremy Lamb, Dwayne Bacon, Miye Oni and Shabazz Muhammad.
Sources: The Los Angeles Lakers have brought in several free agents for practices, including former lottery picks Shabazz Muhammad and Jeremy Lamb. Dwayne Bacon, Miye Oni and others also worked for the Lakers, @hoopshype has learned.
— Michael Scotto (@MikeAScotto) September 17, 2022
Lamb is by far the most intriguing name of the four. At 6’5, he looks like a 2 guard, although his 6’11 wingspan allows him to play a defensive position. He’s a great rebounder for a wing and blocks shots at an extremely high rate. Offensively, his best skill is his floater, but he doesn’t reach the rim particularly often, and he’s only been a league-average three-point shooter about once every four years. Lamb has been in the league for ten seasons, suggesting he’s doing something right, but his lack of spacing could be a problem on this Lakers roster.
If Lamb’s shooting is suspicious, wait until you get to Bacon, who is probably best known for Rick Cho accidentally calling him Dwyane Wade during his introductory press conference in Charlotte. At 6’7, Bacon is a good size and he’s only 27 years old. Unfortunately, his effective field goal percentage has ranked in the bottom 10% on the wing in three of his four seasons, according to Cleaning the Glass. Other than not turning the ball over, it’s hard to find anything Bacon excels at.
Oni doesn’t have the problem of a bad track record, but that’s because he played just 672 minutes in three seasons at Utah. He took all nine shots in the 2021-22 season, making one of them. He hasn’t even adapted to the G League since 2019-20, so Oni would be a pure flier considering how clean the slate he has been in his NBA career.
At least Oni has been tangentially part of the league for the past three years as Muhammad hasn’t played for an NBA team since 2018. His best trait was as a volume scorer and he never really does this effectively, which makes him an odd fit on a Laker team where he wouldn’t have the ball in his hands. But he’s 6’6, which was apparently the only barrier of entry for this particular workout.
While it’s nice to see the Lakers recognize a weak position and try to address it, at this point in free agency there are slim choices. The Lakers can’t even really create a training camp battle as they already have 19 players on their camp roster unless they choose to waive Wenyen Gabriel, who is on a non-guaranteed deal, or in the l one of two meanings.
The best opportunity to find a quality wing to play alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis would have come in July, and then the Lakers struck. Now they hunt through the bargain bin. The only way out of this mess would be to acquire a wing via trade, which would solve more than one of the team’s current problems.
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