The Los Angeles Lakers suffered a major blow when Avery Bradley announced that he wasn’t going to attend the NBA’s bubble in Orlando, as he claims this isn’t the moment to play basketball while also expressing some concerns about his health.
Bradley isn’t the top-notch defender he was a couple of years ago but his presence on both ends of the court was still pretty important for Frank Vogel’s system, so it wasn’t going to be easy to find a suitable replacement for him in that short notice.
Luckily for them, there was a free agent looming around for months that had already expressed his interest in wearing the purple and gold and teaming up again with LeBron James: JR Smith.
And, as most rumors claimed, the Lakers were also interested in bringing the ‘Henny God’ on board, so it didn’t come as a surprise when ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski announced that they’re currently working on a deal to add him to the team’s roster.
“Free agent guard J.R. Smith and the Lakers are working through final steps of a deal today and he will be added to roster for the Orlando restart, sources tell ESPN,” Wojnarowski reported.
Free agent guard J.R. Smith and the Lakers are working through final steps of a deal today and he will be added to roster for the Orlando restart, sources tell ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 29, 2020
Smith has clearly evolved and matured as a player since he first teamed up with LeBron. He was an instrumental part of their 2016 Championship run and he’s the perfect player for the Laker’s system.
JR is a solid backcourt defender, way more than people credit him for. He’s also a standout shooter – especially in contested shots – that’ll thrive again with all the space LeBron creates with his drives. The Lakers just got better, everybody.