Job security trumped Kent Bazemore‘s fondness for the Lakers when he decided where to sign as a free agent this past summer, Mark Medina of The Los Angeles Daily News writes. The two-year, $4MM deal Bazemore signed with the Hawks this past offseason marks the first time in his career that he has had a fully guaranteed contract, notes Medina. “Having a non-guaranteed contract is the most stressful thing in the world, especially when January rolls around and that deadline comes up,” Bazemore said. “You start losing sleep. Being guaranteed is great. Now it’s just about working and trying to earn your stripes.”
Here’s more from out west:
- Bazemore also noted that his decision to depart for Atlanta had nothing to do with Los Angeles ending last season at 25-57, its worst mark in franchise history, Medina adds. “The Lakers are the Lakers, they’ll be back I’m sure. Mitch Kupchak and the Buss family are probably cooking some stuff right now to get their guys back out there,” Bazemore said. “They won a lot of championships and it’s a pedigree that doesn’t die. They’re always around. They’ll always be in the news, whether it’s good or bad. They’ll still get a bunch of TV games. They’re not going anywhere.”
- Second-year guard CJ McCollum will be sidelined for a minimum of four weeks with a fractured right index finger, the Blazers announced. McCollum is averaging 5.0 points, 1.1 assists and 1.1 rebounds in 13.1 minutes of action in 11 appearances this season.
- The Thunder have assigned Grant Jerrett to their D-League affiliate the Oklahoma City Blue, the team announced. This is Jerrett’s second assignment to the D-League this season, though his first trip was for a mere three hours so he could log some practice time. Jerrett has yet to appear for the Thunder in a regular season contest.