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Lakers Claim Carlos Boozer Off Waivers

10:52pm: The Lakers have officially announced the addition of Boozer via a team release.

“Carlos is an established veteran and a proven all-star, who will be a welcome addition to our team,” said GM Mitch Kupchak. “We’re very pleased to have won the bidding process and to have gained his rights, and look forward to his contributions next season.”

5:29pm: The Lakers secured Boozer with a winning bid of $3.25MM, reports Stein (via Twitter). Consequently, the Bulls will owe Boozer the difference of $13.55MM.

4:08pm: The Lakers submitted the winning bid to secure Carlos Boozer off amnesty waivers, reports Marc Stein of (Twitter link). It’s not immediately clear how much the Lakers bid, but it is a partial claim of his $16.8MM salary, tweets Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. The Lakers will be on the hook for the amount of their bid and the Bulls will have to pay the rest, though L.A.’s amount will count against the cap and Chicago’s won’t.

NBA: Chicago Bulls at Orlando MagicThe Bulls had tried to fold Boozer into what would have been a sign-and-trade for Pau Gasol, but the Lakers turned Chicago away, as K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune notes (on Twitter), only to secure Boozer at a lower cost. Chicago wound up amnestying Boozer to clear the cap space necessary to sign Gasol and Nikola Mirotic.

The Hornets and Hawks appeared to be the early favorites to submit partial waiver claims for Boozer, but Charlotte took itself out of the running after agreeing to a deal with Lance Stephenson. Teams with cap room were the only ones eligible to submit a bid, encompassing about a third of the league. The Lakers could have opened up as much roughly $3MM for Boozer while still retaining Kendall Marshall‘s non-guaranteed contract and the rights to restricted free agent Ryan Kelly.

The specter of a Boozer amnesty hung over the Bulls all season, particularly once Carmelo Anthony reportedly identified the team among his top choices in free agency. Amnestying Boozer appeared to be the easiest path toward clearing the necessary cap room for a splashy upgrade. Chicago made a pitch to Anthony and also reportedly met with Rich Paul, the agent for LeBron James. The Bulls apparently gauged Chicago native Dwyane Wade‘s interest in a homecoming, too, but all the while, they seemed to prefer trading Boozer rather than amnestying him.

Chicago wound up with neither a superstar free agent nor a willing trade partner for Boozer, so notoriously thrifty owner Jerry Reinsdorf will be stuck paying him even though he’ll be playing elsewhere. Still, the robust market that developed for the 32-year-old power forward as soon as he hit waivers meant he wasn’t likely to hit free agency, and the Lakers end up relieving some of Reinsdorf’s obligation with their bid.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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30 thoughts on “Lakers Claim Carlos Boozer Off Waivers

  1. victor gonzales

    lin,davis,boozer … not a bad offseason .. sure they wanted james,melo,gasol…. but i think this will work out for them .. could see them at number 6 seed…

    • Bill Boo

      How can you see them as a 6 seed?

      San Antonio, OKC, LAC, Golden State, Portland, Houston, Dallas, Memphis, Phoenix, are all better then the lakers easily.

      I would even pick New Orleans and Denver ahead of the lakers

      So in the end the lakers are the 12th best team in the West

      • victor gonzales

        i dont think phonenix is going to have the same season … and i dont think dallas is going to be that good … i like parsons but i dont think he is a game changer…and calderon was a good ball handler they replaced him with felton… and tyson has kind of been injury prone lately plus loosing marion … and who is to say the warriors dont take a step back with kerrs system .. and all memphis did was get older… i would not put money on it or anything but i could see the lakers have a surprise season… they still need a coach lol …

        • Bill Boo

          I give you credit for having hope but even if a few of those teams take a step back the lakers need to take a huge step forward seeing that they lost their best player last year in gasol. (kobe was hurt so gasol was there best last year)

          • victor gonzales

            im not a lakers fan by any means .. but i could see lin and boozer and kobe playing really well together … and like i said in my previous post i think there is great oppurtunity for a few teams in the west to take steps back … i could see the west shaking out like this

            1 okc
            2 sa
            3 lac
            4 por
            5 hou
            6 lakers
            7 gsw
            8 mem

            dal,phx,pelicans all fighting for 8th spot

            just my opinon … i wouldnt bet the farm on it or anything

          • Cristian Alejandro Riega

            Heck, I wouldn’t even bet the chicken coop on those projections. Yes, there will always be regression, but for this scenario to play out, a lot of things have to go right for the Lakers, AND a lot of things have to go happen to the other teams.

          • Scott

            No way the Mavs miss the playoffs. Parsons is MUCH better than Marion and Chandler is an upgrade over Dalembert. Calderon’s 3 pt shooting will be missed (his lack of defense will not), but Devin Harris was excellent in the playoffs and can be a good producer at PG. And Felton will benefit playing under Carlisle, although I’m not expecting too much.

            Lakers will be interesting, but to expect anything better than the 8 seed is a bit crazy haha.

    • mbrink12

      6 seed? Are you serious? They’ll be lucky to get an 8 seed. You’ve got the Spurs, Thunder, Clippers, Trail Blazers, Rockets, Golden State all in the top 6 last year and not one of those got terribly worse, minus the Rockets a tad, losing Parsons. Then you’ve got teams like Dallas, Memphis, Phoenix who all improved. You’re delusional if you think they could be a 6 seed.

    • You mean #6 seed for the Draft lottery right?

  2. Z....

    meh…they still cant guard the PG spot and could use a couple of athletic wing players. I stand by what I said in the Ed Davis article

  3. Yamsi12

    Easy western conf. Finals contender now. Good job Jim Buss!!!

  4. Bill Boo

    Reinsdorf who often is cheap should have no problem paying boozer since the Bulls are one of the most profitable teams and have the biggest arena in the NBA.

    • Please share how you believe Reinsdorf is cheap? This is a lazy and wrong narrative perpetuated by espn because of their own vendettas. Reinsdorf has paid more than $65M to pay people to go away Ala boozer since 2000. That is $65M to not work for him. Lol… Who is cheap now?

      • Bill Boo

        Look at how many times he has had the bulls avoid luxury taxes because he didnt want to pay them, I agree that I dont think he is as cheap as the media says but there are instances. 100 million dollar payrolls dont mean much in MLB when almost every big market team has a huge payroll anyways plus Id bet that more than half of MLB teams spend more than 100 million on payrolls anyways

        • Manchershaw Engineer

          It is not easy to get into the luxury tax. Two types of teams pay the tax. Teams that have a ton of highly paid players that are winning championships, and aging teams that can’t unload contracts. The Bulls have been neither since the luxury tax was a thing.

          It’s hard to get into luxury tax territory. You can’t just decide to get there. It’s a mix of being capped out, using your mid-level, and having young players that you own bird rights for being up for huge contracts. Last year was the first year since the luxury tax was a thing that the Bulls had an opportunity to have to pay it. But they had an expiring deal and the team wasn’t very good without Rose so they dealt that deal. That’s not being cheap, that’s having a GM that’s not a moron.

          • victor gonzales

            seems to me the bulls have a pretty good owner and gm … i would rather have a smart owner and gm then have what the nets have …

    • I hate this media story of reinsdorf being cheap. When? Reinsdorf also owns the white sox, who for many years had payrolls well over $100 million.

  5. Manchershaw Engineer

    Wow. Looks like the Lakers overplayed their hand when negotiating with the Bulls about Gasol. They could have had Boozer as well as other assets. It’s obvious now they wanted him. Must of thought Bulls weren’t willing to amnesty Boozer. Costly mistake, Lakers.

    • victor gonzales

      i dont see the mistake .. if they would of traded for him they would of had to pay him over 16 mil…. i bet they got him for 7.5 mil

      • Manchershaw Engineer

        16 million but also with perhaps picks, even if they were only second rounders. That difference in salary ended up being a terrible multi-year contract for a negative WAR player (Jordan Hill). Mistake all around.

        • guccci7383

          hill’s contract was a fine 1 imho one. theres no better big man on the market, its 2 yrs 18 million and the 2nd yr is a team option which will most likely be declined to get the cap space back alone with Lin, nash,boozer,marshall and sacre. lAkers will have max cap space again next summer. not sure who there gonna go after with it tho

          • Manchershaw Engineer

            My point though is are they better off giving Hill a deal no one would match (as he’s not the best big available, nor is he worth more than a minimum salary), essentially eating all their current cap room, or trading for Boozer outright, picking up some picks, and eating the cap room for the same amount of time. Seems like the Lakers made a bad call.

          • guccci7383

            hill will avg close to a double double and a block a game with good defense.. name the free agent big better then hill

          • Manchershaw Engineer

            With a negative WAR. In a system designed to boost offensive numbers for players with exactly his skill set.

            I would say ANY free agent would be a better signing. But even without going that extreme it’s obvious he doesn’t deserve more than a minimum salary contract. The Lakers are out of their mind.

      • mbrink12

        you mean 3.25M

        • victor gonzales

          even better …

  6. rxbrgr

    Are there any restrictions on the Lakers from trading Boozer say they wish to down the road?

    • tjbagdad

      Can’t be traded for a year

  7. omar jimenez

    Most of the last year’s playoff teams are in tact or improved. Houston got worse in my opinion. Dallas could go either way. I hate felton. If they could get Bledsoe or upgrade PG, they’re in. Memphis is older but they could still be solid. I’m betting they are. Ok. SA, LAC, Portland, GS, are all solid phoenix has a shot at 8 maybe 7. The lakera all depend on coaching and of course kobe. They have a shot at 7 but I think it’s a safe bet theyll fight for 8.

  8. Jerry.T

    I don’t think the Lakers did too bad this off season even after losing out the free agents and losing Gasol. Gasol is still good but getting more and more fragile as the years go on. The additions of Lin, Boozer, Davis, Randle and Clarkson are nice additions and keeping Young, Hill, Xavier, Kelley and Johnson are nice as well. I am actually excited to see why this team can do and to see how Kobe can bounce back. I love how everybody on every sports talk boars are always so negative lol. Hate to spend a day with all you negative people..probably miserable company lol. This is the lineup I would put out there if I was the Lakers coach whoever that ends up being.


    I would also like to see the Lakers sign one more Center for a back up in case Hill can’t stay healthy and maybe bring back MWP for a back up SF.

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