Archive for the ‘ Los Angeles Lakers Blog ’ Category

Will Roy Hibbert and Lakers mesh?

Here’s the Los Angeles Daily News discussing Lakers center Roy Hibbert, who is in an interesting situation because he’s joining a roster of players that aren’t a team quite yet. Chemistry must be developed. Kobe Bryant is returning from injury, but to what? The Lakers have some interesting pieces. Still, little is expected. But that gives Hibbert a chance to shine more than he recently has. Anyway:

Will Roy Hibbert and Lakers mesh?

It may have seemed head-scratching from afar that the Pacers had no interest in retaining a player who once attracted a four-year, $58 million max contract offer so he could not sign with the Portland Trail Blazers. Yet, Hibbert averaged only 25.3 minutes per game, his lowest since his second year in the NBA, because the Pacers had the personnel and intent to play at a faster style. No one will mistake the current Lakers with the Showtime Era. But can Hibbert adjust his accelerator?

On one hand, the Lakers want Hibbert to play at a methodical pace because of factors involving Kobe Bryant’s durability and the team’s aforementioned defensive issues. But the Lakers also have a young core, including point guard D’Angelo Russell, combo guard Jordan Clarkson and power forward Julius Randle. It would be in the Lakers’ interest to tap into that speed to generate easy baskets.

Numerous reports say Hibbert has lost a significant chunk of weight this offseason, which should help the conditioning required from a Scott training camp. But that might just mark one of many steps Hibbert will have to take to keep up with everyone else.

Roy Hibbert slims down for Lakers

Here’s the Los Angeles Times reporting on new Lakers center Roy Hibbert, who may be a bit quicker this upcoming season after reportedly dropping some pounds:

He is more of a practical solution than hailed savior, the latter tag almost certainly bestowed upon LaMarcus Aldridge had he signed with the Lakers in July (it wasn’t close).

Hibbert will try to fix what continually ailed the Lakers last season, an appallingly bad defense that ranked 29th out of 30 in defensive efficiency.

If you tell Hibbert the NBA is phasing out 7-foot centers in favor of 24-foot shooters, he’ll remind you that the Golden State Warriors needed shot-blocker Andrew Bogut to get to the NBA Finals.

On the other hand, Hibbert consulted a nutritionist a few months ago and lost 14 pounds, getting down to 268.

Lakers sign Robert Upshaw

The Los Angeles Lakers have signed center Robert Upshaw to a multi-year contract, it was announced today by General Manager Mitch Kupchak.

According to the Los Angeles Times, “only $35,000 of Upshaw’s $525,093 is guaranteed for the 2015-16 season, according to a person with access to the NBA’s salary database. The second year of his contract, worth $874,636, is non-guaranteed.”

In five games for the Lakers’ entry in the 2015 NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, Upshaw averaged 1.4 points, 2.2 rebounds, and 0.8 blocks in 11.5 minutes per game, highlighted by three blocks in just 12 minutes in his debut on July 10th against Minnesota.

Undrafted as an early entry candidate for the 2015 NBA Draft after his sophomore season at Washington, Upshaw led the nation with 4.5 blocks per game in just 24.9 minutes in 19 appearances in 2014-15. In addition, the 7-0 center averaged 10.9 points on 59.3% shooting and 8.2 rebounds for the Huskies in his final collegiate campaign, to go along with six double-doubles.

Los Angeles Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak announced today that Jesse Buss has been promoted to assistant general manager/director of scouting, Ryan West to director of player personnel, and Clay Moser to assistant coach/director of basketball strategy.

Buss most recently served as the Lakers’ director of scouting for the past three seasons, overseeing all scouting operations in preparation for the NBA Draft, in addition to his own scouting responsibilities. In his new role, Buss will continue to contribute to personnel decisions under Kupchak, Executive Vice President, Basketball Operations Jim Buss, and Assistant General Manager Glenn Carraro, and will also continue to assist the Lakers’ NBA D-League team, the D-Fenders, with their draft and scouting. Originally joining the organization in 2006, Jesse spent two seasons as a basketball operations assistant before serving as a scout from 2008-11, and as scouting coordinator for the 2011-12 season.

West begins his new role after serving as assistant director of scouting for the past three seasons, where he was an integral part of the player evaluation process and had input in all drafting and scouting decisions. In addition to expanding his existing roles in the organization, West will maintain his extensive in-person scouting schedule. West originally joined the Lakers as a scout in the summer of 2009, and prior to joining the Lakers, spent eight seasons as a scout with the Memphis Grizzlies.

This will be Moser’s fifth season with the Lakers organization, originally coming to Los Angeles as associate head coach of the D-Fenders for the 2011-12 campaign, before being promoted to the parent club in December of that year. He served as the head advance NBA scout for the 2012-13 and 2013-14 seasons, and added assistant coaching duties to his responsibilities last season. The Wisconsin-LaCrosse graduate brings over 25 years of professional basketball management and coaching experience to the newly-created position, where he will work directly with the coaching and analytics staffs to integrate ideas and information between the departments. Moser will work closely with Director of Analytics Yuju Lee and Associate Director of Analytics Aaron Danielson.

Lee brings a wealth of statistical and computer science knowledge to his position, holding MS degrees in each discipline from UCLA, while working closely with the basketball operations, coaching, and training staffs to incorporate statistical analysis into the day-to-day operation of each department. Lee was originally hired as a consultant by the Lakers for the 2012-13 season, contributing to a variety of analytics projects.

Danielson’s role includes designing and implementing statistical analysis for the basketball operations department, while also assessing league trends and developing new analytic content for the coaching and training staffs. Currently finishing his PhD in statistics at UCLA, Danielson previously earned master’s degrees in public policy from the University of Chicago and in economics from NYU. He began working with the Lakers two seasons ago in a consultant role.

Lakers sign Marcelo Huertas

Lakers sign Marcelo Huertas

The Los Angeles Lakers have signed guard Marcelo Huertas, it was announced today by General Manager Mitch Kupchak.

Until we hear otherwise, we will assume this is a non-guaranteed deal that merely brings Huertas to Lakers training camp.

The Brazilian native began his professional playing career in his home country for three seasons (2001-2004) before signing with Joventut of the Spanish ACB League, where he played three seasons (2004-2007), winning the 2006 FIBA Euro Cup. He remained in the ACB League for the 2007-08 season, which saw him garner an All-ACB Team selection with Bilbao Basket, before joining Fortitudo Bologna in Italy’s top domestic league for the 2008-09 campaign. “Marcelinho” returned to the ACB League with Saski Baskonia from 2009-11, where he won the 2009-10 Spanish National Championship, and in 2010-11 won the Euroleague’s weekly MVP award two times and led the ACB with 5.9 assists per game en route to a second All-ACB Team selection.

Before joining the Lakers, Huertas spent the previous four seasons (2011-15) with Spanish power FC Barcelona, where he was a key piece on their 2011-12 and 2013-14 Spanish National Championship and 2013 Spanish National Cup-winning teams.

The 6’3’’ point guard has played in Euroleague competition seven times, including the last six straight years, amassing 165 games played, and averages of 8.0 points, 3.8 assists, and 2.1 rebounds per contest. He led the Euroleague in free throw shooting at 97.2% during the 2012-13 season, and was the 2013-14 Euroleague Top 16 Round 2 MVP.

Additionally, the 32-year-old has extensive international experience, notably as a member of the Brazilian national team for the 2012 Olympics in London, where he led the squad with 6.0 assists per game in addition to 11.3 points, good for second-best on the roster. He has also appeared on three consecutive FIBA World Championship (renamed FIBA Basketball World Cup) teams in 2006, 2010, and 2014. His decorated international resume includes gold medals from the 2006 South American Championship (where he was named MVP of the tournament after averaging a team-leading 16.8 points to go with 4.0 assists) and 2007 Pan American Games, in addition to three medals from the FIBA Americas Championship: 2005 and 2009 (gold), and 2011 (silver).

No FIBA Asia play for Jordan Clarkson

Here’s the Los Angeles Daily News blog reporting on Lakers guard Jordan Clarkson, who will be more rested coming into the upcoming NBA season, as explained below:

No FIBA Asia play for Jordan Clarkson

Jordan Clarkson had wanted to play for the Philippine national team. The team wanted Clarkson to play, too.

But amid concerns that his participation would conflict with his responsibilities to the Lakers, Clarkson will not play during for the Gilas Pilipinas during this month’s FIBA Asia championships, the Philippine Basketball Assn. announced on Tuesday on their website.

The statement added that Philippine national team executives Ricky Vergas and Patrick Gregorio met recently with Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak and president Jeanie Buss about Clarkson’s participation.

L.A. D-Fenders announce coaching staff

The Los Angeles D-Fenders have hired Paul Woolpert, Brian Walsh and Jermaine Byrd as assistant coaches and have promoted Will Scott to assistant coach/video coordinator, it was announced today by General Manager Nick Mazzella.

“I am pleased to have Paul Woolpert, Brian Walsh, Jermaine Byrd and Will Scott join us as assistant coaches for this upcoming season,” D-Fenders head coach Casey Owens said. “Paul and Brian are veteran coaches who have won multiple championships throughout their careers. Both have been head coaches in the past, and their experience, leadership, and expertise will be invaluable to the organization as we begin this new challenge. Jermaine and Will are D-League veterans, rising young coaches, and have worked extensively with Team USA and the Lakers, respectively. It’s a dynamic staff, and all of us are focused on bringing championship level basketball to El Segundo.”

Woolpert adds nearly 30 years of professional experience to the D-Fenders staff. Woolpert spent the 2014-15 season as lead assistant coach for the Perth Wildcats in the National Basketball League in Australia, after spending the three seasons prior as the head coach of the Townsville Crocodiles. Woolpert served as head coach of the Tulsa 66ers in 2008-09, after spending the previous four seasons as head coach of the Yakima Sun Kings in the Continental Basketball Association. Yakima enjoyed continued success with Woolpert at the helm, winning the CBA Championship in 2006 and 2007, while setting a CBA record for winning percentage, finishing the 2007-08 season with a 43-5 record (.895). Woolpert got his start as a scout and video coordinator for the Seattle SuperSonics in 1986, remaining in the role until 1994. From 1995-2004, Woolpert served as a Continental Basketball Association scout for the Portland Trail Blazers. Woolpert would also coach in other capacities while maintaining those responsibilities, spending time as an assistant coach with the Sioux Falls Skyforce and the Yakima Sun Kings. Woolpert was promoted to head coach of the Sun Kings prior to the 1998 season, winning his first CBA Championship in 2000.

Walsh joins the D-Fenders staff after spending the 2014-15 season as assistant coach at Albuquerque High School in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Walsh spent the 2012-13 season alongside D-Fenders head coach Casey Owens as an assistant coach for Guaiqueries in Venezuela, after serving as an assistant coach in Belarus, China and Vietnam. In 2006, Walsh got his first head coaching experience with Gambusinos De Fresnillo in Mexico, before joining the Colorado 14ers staff. Walsh spent the 2007-08 season as associate head coach for the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, closing out the season as interim head coach. Prior to the 2009-10 season, Walsh took over as head coach of Al Ahli Professional Sports Club, winning the SBL U19 Championship, while reaching the semi-finals of the Arab Nations Cup. Walsh got his start at the professional level with the New Mexico Slam as head coach/director of player personnel, before joining the Baylor University staff as an assistant coach and lead scout. Prior to the 2004-05 season, Walsh joined the Dakota Wizards staff as assistant coach under head coach Casey Owens. The Wizards would finish the season with a league-best record of 32-16. Walsh would then serve as head coach of the Nebraska Cranes of the USBL in 2006, winning the USBL championship. After the season, Walsh joined the Colorado 14ers as an assistant coach. The 14ers reached the D-League Finals in 2007, with Walsh responsible for all scouting and player development responsibilities.

Byrd hails from Houston, Texas and returns to the D-Fenders after serving as an assistant coach for the 2014-15 season. Byrd played a key role in player development, helping Jabari Brown, Vander Blue and Jamaal Franklin earn GATORADE Call-Ups. Prior to joining the D-Fenders staff, Byrd spent the 2013-14 season as an assistant coach with the Sioux Falls SkyForce. Byrd worked his way up within the Tulsa 66ers organization before joining the SkyForce. He served as an assistant coach for the 66ers during the 2011-12 season and was the team’s video coordinator the two seasons prior. In 2011, Byrd served as an assistant coach on the USA Men’s Basketball team during the Pan American Games, helping the team to a bronze medal. Byrd played collegiately at the University of Sioux Falls and led the team to its first NAIA Final Four appearance in school history.

Scott begins his fifth season with the D-Fenders and will continue in his role as video coordinator, while also serving as an assistant coach. Scott’s primary responsibilities include video editing, scouting upcoming opponents and assisting in on-court player development. Scott also assists the Lakers in the video room, and in the summer months he joins the Los Angeles Sparks of the WNBA, serving as their video coordinator and actively participating in practices, having done so each of the past two seasons. While on campus at Indiana University, Scott worked as a student manager and acted as an assistant to the coaching staff. His duties included video editing, supporting practice drills and aiding with in-game operations.

Nina Hsieh returns for her seventh season as head athletic trainer for the D-Fenders. Hsieh monitors the health of the team and is responsible for injury prevention and treatment of the players. Hsieh also assists the Lakers training staff, joining the team for training camp, as well as traveling annually with the team to the NBA Summer League. Hsieh has functioned as athletic trainer for the UC Santa Barbara men’s soccer team (2010-11), along with the women’s basketball team (2004-08).

Lakers sign Michael Frazier

Lakers sign Michael Frazier

The Los Angeles Lakers have signed guard Michael Frazier to a multi-year contract, it was announced today by General Manager Mitch Kupchak.

The 21-year-old Frazier, a 6’4’’ shooting guard, most recently played for the Golden State Warriors in the 2015 NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, averaging 4.5 points, 2.7 rebounds, and 1.0 assists in 15.8 minutes per game over six contests (all starts).

In his three collegiate seasons at the University of Florida (2012-15), Frazier averaged 9.9 points, 3.5 rebounds, and 1.1 assists in 25.7 minutes per game while shooting 44.3% from the field and 43.2% from beyond-the-arc. As a sophomore in 2013-14, Frazier made 118 three-pointers (a Florida single-season record) on an impressive 44.5% clip from deep, while averaging 12.4 points and 30.5 minutes per game, playing a key role in Florida’s run to the 2014 Final Four. That season, Frazier was both an All-SEC Tournament and All-NCAA Tournament South Regional team selection, in addition to his SEC Academic Honor Roll accolades. The Tampa, FL native went undrafted as an early entry in the 2015 NBA Draft.

Will Kobe Bryant be on the 2016 U.S. Olympic team? Probably not. But that it’s even a distinct possibility is a fascinating discussion topic. So, don’t expect it, but at the same time, here’s ESPN Los Angeles reporting:

Will Kobe Bryant be on the 2016 U.S. Olympic team?

Could the lasting image to cap Kobe Bryant’s basketball career be of him donning a gold medal at the end of the 2016 Rio Olympics?

USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo revealed Thursday at the conclusion of Team USA’s minicamp that he’s had a conversation with the Los Angeles Lakers guard about that very scenario and has not ruled out Bryant for the 12-man roster next summer.

“I was quoted on Kobe,” Colangelo said after USA Basketball’s intrasquad scrimmage at the Thomas & Mack Center. “In response to a question about him, I said it would be a great story if he did [play in Rio].

“And so, he also mentioned to me in a private conversation that if he had his druthers, he would love to ride off into the sunset playing one more time and winning the gold medal. And that would be the end. But he was very quick to say, ‘But, I don’t want a spot. I need to earn the spot. I need to be capable of playing at that level to be considered.’ And I said, ‘You got that. That’s always there for you, Kobe.’”

Lakers sign Jonathan Holmes

The Los Angeles Lakers have signed forward Jonathan Holmes to a multi-year contract, it was announced today by General Manager Mitch Kupchak.

In five games for the Celtics’ entry in the 2015 NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, Holmes averaged 12.2 points, 5.6 rebounds, 1.2 assists, and 1.0 steals in 21.8 minutes per game, while shooting 55.6% from the field. The 6’9’’ Holmes also appeared in three games for Boston in the 2015 Utah Jazz Summer League, and in his eight games (seven starts) between the two competitions, shot a perfect 15-15 from the free throw line, and 13-28 (46.4%) from beyond-the-arc.

Undrafted after spending four seasons at the University of Texas (2011-15), Holmes averaged 9.2 points and 5.9 rebounds in 23.1 minutes per game over 127 contests with the Longhorns. The San Antonio native was named All-Big 12 Second Team and team MVP as a junior after averaging 12.8 points, 7.2 rebounds, and 1.3 blocks on 50.5% shooting, and was an All-Big 12 Honorable mention as a senior with averages of 10.3 points, 6.1 rebounds, and 1.0 blocks per game, while hitting 1.3 three-pointers per contest.

Enjoy these video highlights of Los Angeles Lakers rookie guard D’Angelo Russell from 2015 summer league:

Here’s the Orange County Register reporting on new Lakers center Roy Hibbert, who the Indiana Pacers basically traded to Los Angeles for nothing:

Roy Hibbert says he will dominate defensively for Lakers

To Larry Bird and others in charge in Indiana, Roy Hibbert was a lost cause. A lumbering center with little offensive game and a disinterested temperament, they were happy pawning him off for nothing more than a future second-round draft pick.

The Lakers, however, view Hibbert as a player who can not only regain his standing as an All-Star big man, but anchor their anemic defense, which last year ranked second-worst in the NBA.

“I expect to play at an All-Star defensive level, and everything else will come,” Hibbert said Wednesday.

Hibbert, 28, was introduced at the Lakers facility along with free agents Lou Williams and Brandon Bass, a clutch of veterans expected to help ease the burden on the team’s young core.

New Lakers have not heard from Kobe yet

Here’s ESPN Los Angeles reporting on the Lakers, a team in serious transition, still kind-of built around old Kobe Bryant. Sort of. Money-wise, at least. Off-court communication-wise, maybe not so much right now.

When a new player joins the Los Angeles Lakers, it’s almost custom to ask whether he’s heard from the franchise’s longtime star Kobe Bryant and what — if any — advice, wisdom or expectations the veteran guard shared.

That question was posed Wednesday to forward Brandon Bass, guard Lou Williams and center Roy Hibbert, all of whom the Lakers acquired this offseason, the first two through free agency and the last through a trade with the Indiana Pacers.

And all three players, who were introduced at the team’s practice facility, offered the same answer: silence.

They looked at one another; Hibbert shook his head “no,” and they sat there. Bass smiled.

Kobe Bryant is a leader. And leaders generally like to talk. A lot, sometimes. Here’s Jordan Hill discussing former teammate Kobe Bryant, as reported by ESPN LA:

Jordan Hill joined the Los Angeles Lakers in March 2012, and in the three seasons that followed, the forward learned what it was like playing with star Lakers guard Kobe Bryant.

“When he’s on the floor, it’s like [exhales], all you hear is Kobe’s mouth,” Hill said when he was introduced by the Indiana Pacers, who acquired him through free agency this summer.

“He’s on the floor, all you hear is Kobe’s mouth, like during practice and games, it get loud. It get loud. A lot of people can’t handle that, I guess.”

Pacers trade Roy Hibbert to Lakers

Pacers trade Roy Hibbert to Lakers

The Los Angeles Lakers yesterday acquired center Roy Hibbert in a trade with the Indiana Pacers, it was announced by General Manager Mitch Kupchak. In exchange the Pacers will receive a future second round pick.

In other words, the Pacers basically said, “here, take Hibbert.” 

“We’re happy to add a veteran big man to the roster,” said Kupchak. “Roy is a proven All-Star center that will help improve our front line. In addition he is a consummate professional and we look forward to having him on the team.”

Hibbert is very effective on defense. Offensively, he is limited.

“I’d like to thank Roy for all his contributions during his time in Indiana,” said Pacers President of Basketball Operations Larry Bird. “He was a two-time NBA All-Star, and we appreciate everything he did for our franchise both on and off the court.”

A seven-year NBA veteran and two-time All-Star (2012 and 2014), Hibbert appeared in 76 games (all starts) with the Pacers last season, averaging 10.6 points, 7.1 rebounds and 1.6 blocks in 25.3 minutes.

Originally selected by the Toronto Raptors with the 17th overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft, the Queens, New York native was acquired by the Pacers shortly before his rookie campaign and has appeared in 533 career games (492 starts) with Indiana, averaging 11.1 points, 6.8 rebounds and 1.9 blocks in 25.9 minutes. In 2014, Hibbert was named to the NBA All-Defensive Second Team after he finished the season ranked fourth in the NBA with 182 blocks (2.25 per game). The 7’2” center out of Georgetown has appeared and started in 54 postseason games averaging 12.6 points, 8.3 rebounds and 2.0 blocked shots in 31.6 minutes.

Lakers sign Brandon Bass

Lakers sign Brandon Bass

The Los Angeles Lakers have signed forward Brandon Bass to a multi-year contract, it was announced yesterday by General Manager Mitch Kupchak.

“I am excited to add a player of Brandon’s skill level and character to our roster,” said Kupchak. “His work ethic, toughness, and selfless play lend themselves well to our team.”

Bass is a solid player and it’ll be interesting to see how he fits alongside newly-acquired Lakers center Roy Hibbert.

The Lakers are still not in a position to be very competitive in a very difficult Western conference.

A 10-year NBA veteran, Bass spent the last four years of his career with Boston, most recently averaging 10.6 points on 50.4% shooting in addition to 4.9 rebounds in 23.5 minutes per game last season. Since 2012-13, Bass has played in 245 of a possible 246 games (185 starts), including playing in all 82 games the last two seasons. For his career, the 30-year-old Bass holds averages of 9.1 points on 49.3% shooting and 4.7 rebounds in 22.6 minutes per game.

The 33rd pick of the 2005 NBA Draft by New Orleans, Bass spent the first two seasons of his career with the then-Hornets before signing as a free agent with Dallas in 2007, where he spent his next two seasons (2007-09). In the summer of 2009, the Baton Rouge native signed a free agent deal with Orlando, where he remained until being traded to Boston on December 12, 2011. Prior to the NBA, the 2005 SEC Player of the Year spent two seasons at LSU before declaring for the Draft following his sophomore season.

Lakers sign Lou Williams

Lakers sign Lou Williams

The Los Angeles Lakers have signed reigning NBA Sixth Man of the Year Lou Williams to a multi-year contract, it was announced yesterday by General Manager Mitch Kupchak.

“I am pleased to welcome Lou to the Laker family,” said Kupchak. “We look forward to his contributions both on-court in bolstering our guard rotation, and also for the veteran leadership he can provide to our young players in the locker room.”

Last season with Toronto, Williams averaged a career-high 15.5 points per game in 80 appearances off the bench, leading to his selection at year’s end as the NBA’s most valuable player in a reserve role. The 10-year veteran also led the Raptors in free throw percentage (86.1%) and made a career-high 152 three-pointers. On March 4, Williams set a Raptors record for points in a quarter with 21 in the fourth period against Cleveland.

Selected by Philadelphia with the 45th pick in the 2005 NBA Draft out of South Gwinnett High School (GA), the 28-year-old spent his first seven NBA seasons with the 76ers before signing with the Atlanta Hawks in the 2012 offseason, and was traded to the Raptors last summer. For his career, Williams holds averages of 11.9 points, 2.9 assists, 2.0 rebounds, and 0.9 steals in 22.9 minutes per game over 634 contests.

The Los Angeles Lakers yesterday signed Anthony Brown, the 34th overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft, to a multi-year contract, it was announced by General Manager Mitch Kupchak.

Brown, a 6-7 guard/forward from Stanford, appeared in 37 games (36 starts) for the Cardinal last season, recording 14.8 points, a team-high 6.9 rebounds and 2.5 assists while shooting 43.1% from the field and 44.1% from three-point range. As a senior, Brown helped lead Stanford to the 2015 NIT championship and was named to the Pac-12 All-Academic Second Team in addition to earning an All-Pac-12 Honorable mention. The Southern California native finished his career at Stanford averaging 10.8 points, 4.8 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 144 games (106 starts).

Lakers, Lou Williams agree to deal

It’s been a tough free agency period for the Lakers. They need all the help they can get, at almost every position. And even though they already have a scoring guard by the name of Kobe Bryant, adding another will help, whether that player gets used as a point guard or simply as scoring punch off the bench. They just need players, period. Enter Lou Williams. Here’s the Toronto Star reporting:

Lakers, Lou Williams agree to deal

Lou Williams has a new home and the Raptors have escaped making another tough decision that might not have resonated well with fans.

Williams, reigning NBA Sixth Man of the Year, has reportedly agreed to a three-year, $21 million (U.S.) contract with the Los Angeles Lakers, sparing the Raptors from being anything like a villain in the departure of another free agent.

Along with Amir Johnson (to Boston on a two-year, $24 million deal) Johnson was a key part of last year’s Raptor success, and there were fans who would have liked both to return.

But the Raptors were not going to pay Williams that salary for three years and they weren’t going to go near $12 million a season for Johnson.

2015 Lakers summer league roster

The Los Angeles Lakers announced today their roster for the 2015 NBA Summer League in Las Vegas. The Summer League entry is highlighted by returning Lakers Julius Randle, 2015 NBA All-Rookie First Team member Jordan Clarkson, Tarik Black and Jabari Brown along with 2015 NBA Draft selections D’Angelo Russell (second overall), Larry Nance Jr. (27th overall) and Anthony Brown (34th overall). Dwight Buycks, who was signed by Los Angeles to a 10-day contract in April of last season, and undrafted rookie Robert Upshaw are also part of the squad.

The team will hold its first practice next Monday, July 6 at the Toyota Sports Center and begin Summer League play in Las Vegas with a back-to-back set of games on Friday, July 10 against the Minnesota Timberwolves and Saturday, July 11 versus the Philadelphia 76ers. The Lakers then follow up with a contest against the New York Knicks on Monday, July 13 before the Summer League tournament begins.

Full roster here: Lakers summer league roster

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