Several executives from teams around the league believe the Lakers will make a hard push to sign Rajon Rondo next summer, the execs tell Chris Mannix of SI.com. The Celtics All-Star is set to hit free agency after the season, and he’s also perhaps the league’s most notorious trade candidate, though Mannix doesn’t suggest the Lakers are eyeing him for a swap.
The Lakers have a clear need for a long-term solution at point guard, where Jeremy Lin has inherited the starting job on his expiring contract after nerve trouble knocked Steve Nash out for the season. Reports linked them to Eric Bledsoe before he re-signed with the Suns on a long-term deal. The team has about $35.1MM in commitments for 2015/16 against a salary cap the league projects to come in around $66-68MM, leaving the Lakers with the flexibility required to sign Rondo to the maximum-salary contract he’ll almost certainly seek.
Still, Rondo has spoken fondly of Boston over the past several months even amid consistent trade rumors and the team’s inability to kick-start a return to the Eastern Conference elite. The 28-year-old is nonetheless coming to an end of a team-friendly five-year, $55MM extension, so this coming summer could present the final opportunity the BDA Sports Management client will have to command first-rate attention on the free agent market.