The Los Angeles Lakers have recently created a big three by adding Russell Westbrook to a duo of Anthony Davis and LeBron James. However, it is obvious that the front office has more work to do, as there is the question of filling out the rest of the roster around their stars.
It is quite likely that the Los Angeles Lakers will be able to acquire some solid ring chasing veterans that would take lower contracts to be on a contender. There are certainly a lot of names that have been connected with the team ahead of the free agency period starting today.
The first of these names is Andre Iguodala, who the Lakers reportedly have an interest in. Iguodala is the 2015 Finals MVP, and he has a lot of experience in the league. His passing and defense would be of good use to the team. While he isn't the same player as when he was with the Golden State Warriors, getting Iguodala off the bench on a veteran minimum would be a great move.
The Los Angeles Lakers would surely need shooting to surround their superstars, especially LeBron James and Russell Westbrook, who thrive with shooting around them. JJ Redick is someone who can shoot the ball at a high level, and there is no question that his off-ball presence and marksmanship from beyond the arc will be beneficial to the playmakers on the roster.
Patty Mills would be an amazing bench point guard, as he is also a great shooter with the benefits of creating a little bit off the dribble, as well as being able to run an offense at a decent level. If the Los Angeles Lakers could realistically get him for the MLE, then he would be able to fill a role on the roster.
Another recent report indicated that Victor Oladipo is also a player that is considering the prospect of signing a one-year veteran minimum with the Los Angeles Lakers, as his market is "drying up". Victor Oladipo would miss part of the season as he recovers from a quadriceps injury, but he is a great shot-creator who can definitely be a good contributor if he's completely healthy.
Dwight Howard had some key contributions during the 2019-20 Los Angeles Lakers championship run, and it seems as though he could be geared for a return to the team. Per Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times, the Los Angeles Lakers could get Dwight Howard in free agency.
Guess who might be back for a third time? Yup, Dwight Howard is ready to return and play center.
Howard would provide more rebounding and rim protection for the team, as well as an athletic big who can fit a role.
Broderick Turner also previously reported that the Los Angeles Lakers were in talks with DeMar DeRozan prior to the Russell Westbrook trade, but a sign and trade is no longer possible due to Kyle Kuzma being sent to the Washington Wizards.
San Antonio Spurs unrestricted free agent DeMar DeRozan was in talks with James, sources said, but the Westbrook deal eliminated that option because it would have required a sign-and-trade scenario and a Kuzma inclusion.
While there may have been talks among the stars about teaming up, it is a lot more difficult for DeMar DeRozan to join the Lakers as of now, bar taking a pay cut to join the roster. However, the more recent free agency report from Turner suggests that it shouldn't be expected that DeRozan takes that route.
DeRozan made $27 million last season and probably doesn’t want to take that big of a pay cut.
DeMar DeRozan would be an amazing addition to the team, though the salary cap would make that complicated. However, it seems as though there was mutual interest between both parties, and DeRozan's midrange prowess would benefit the team greatly.
The last name on Turner's free agency article was Carmelo Anthony. He is good friends with LeBron James and having his scoring ability off the bench as a 6th man would be amazing for the Lakers.
Carmelo Anthony is interested, just waiting on a call from the Lakers when free agency opens Monday.
He has been a high-level 3PT shooter over the last few seasons, and he has been a high-level bench scorer on the Portland Trail Blazers. Perhaps this is the season where Carmelo Anthony truly competes on a team with a real chance to win a championship.
There is no question that the Los Angeles Lakers have a few options for free agency, and it should be exciting to see which veterans they end up adding. Hopefully, they are able to fill out the roster with some good talent, and potentially compete for a championship once again.