Lakers Notes: George, Ball, Russell, Workout

The Lakers will have to unload some salary before next summer to offer Paul George a maximum contract, tweets Bobby Marks of The Vertical. George has informed the Pacers that he plans to opt out after next season and hopes to sign with L.A. The franchise would need roughly $30.6MM in cap room to fit in a full max deal for 2018/19, and right now there’s only about $15.6MM available (Twitter link). That number assumes they make both of their first-round picks this year and renounce all their free agents this summer and next summer except for Julius Randle.

To create more space, the Lakers would have to either renounce Randle, a valuable young talent, or trade one of their big-money contracts in Luol Deng ($18MM for 2018/19) Timofey Mozgov ($16MM) or Jordan Clarkson ($12.5MM), according to Marks (Twitter link). Another option is to use the stretch provision, which would amount to paying Deng $7.2MM and Mozgov $6.4MM over the next five years (Twitter link)

There’s more today out of Los Angeles:

  • The news about George makes the Lakers more likely to draft Lonzo Ball, tweets Jake Fischer of Sports Illustrated. The team is reportedly deciding between Ball and Kansas forward Josh Jackson, but the expected addition of George reduces the need for Jackson.
  • Immaturity remains a concern with incumbent point guard D’Angelo Russell, according to Mark Heisler of The Los Angeles Daily News. Russell, who might be moved to shooting guard if Ball is selected, doesn’t have point guard instincts after switching to the position during his single season at Ohio State. Heisler also shares concerns that Russell is partying too much and that coach Luke Walton has grown tired of the “post-adolescent” nature of the team.
  • Johnny Buss tells Tania Ganguli of The Los Angeles Times that he lost his passion for owning the Lakers when his father Jerry died in 2013. Johnny Buss resigned as members of the board of directors during the season after a failed attempt to take over control of the team. “If anybody thought that Johnny or Jeanie or Jimmy or any of his kids could fill his shoes, they’re grandly mistaken,” Buss said. “He’s a once-in-a-lifetime kind of person. So all we could do was try to stay together and do what he asked us to do and that was to make as much money as possible. Create a franchise that was worth billions.”
  • The Lakers will bring in six players Monday for a pre-draft workout, the team announced via Twitter. They are Gonzaga’s Zach Collins, Clemson’s Avry Holmes, Creighton’s Cole Huff, Cal-Irvine’s Luke Nelson, Columbia’s Luke Petrasek and Alabama-Huntsville’s Seab Webster.
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30 thoughts on “Lakers Notes: George, Ball, Russell, Workout

  1. Thronson5

    Lakers should draft Ball. Don’t think anyone else fits as well. They need a true PG that helps get everyone involved. I think Russell is a way better SG than PG and I’ve said that for years but everyone disagreed with me until he was put in that position and did far better once shifted there. Zubac, Randle, Ingram, Russell and Ball is a decent lineup. I just wonder if they get George next off season and he is a SF where does Ingram play? Do they shift George to PF and trade Randle? Do they trade Russell and play Ingram at SG? This is why I feel they should just trade for George before he even hits free agency. Trade Randle or Russell with the 28 pick and maybe and maybe add another future pick.

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    • UTEP Two Step

      Why does anyone think Randle has value? What has he shown?

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      • Chris

        He averages a double double. While he can’t shoot 3’s he can do things as a PF that can help a team win.

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        • UTEP Two Step

          There’s lots of stats to be had on a terrible team. Randle is a bench player in today’s NBA.

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      • JT19

        He’s a very poor man’s Draymond Green. He has a Brandon Bass type of game but with more upside and Bass carved out a nice role as starting 4/backup big for a few years, no reason Randle can’t be better.

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      • halos101

        seriously, laker fans think he’s a star. I know a lot of laker fans and every single one of them are in love with him. He is a role player at best, and will be overpaid really badly.

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    • choo7

      I agree, I’d trade D Russell for George over Randle. Randle has more upside to the team in my opinion

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        • bsim31

          I swear some people don’t actually watch the games. U got a 21 year old PG showing flashes of brilliance or an athletic PF who hasn’t shown any improvement in his offensive game

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          • 1980MVP

            Maybe if he put the team, the job first. Instead of running around partying, he would be brilliant.

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  2. PeeWeeHerron618

    can’t use the stretch provision on two players

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    • Chris

      I don’t see why everyone is so down on D’Angelo. His career progression per 36 minutes rivals some all time greats (there was an article on this I can’t find right now). The guy can average 20-5-5 from the SG. What more do you want? I think with a guy like Ball, he’ll get even better shots. Personally, I think the Lakers should just trade Ingram for PG13. I don’t see how they fit together, and honestly didn’t see this high ceiling everyone spoke of last year. He can’t shoot like KD. He’s ceiling to me is Rudy Gay, a great player, but hardly untouchable and worth trading if it assures is of a star on the team. Then someone like Boogie or even LBJ would be more interested in joining.

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      • KnicksCavsFan

        I think there’s so much pressure for players to develop quickly because of the short-term a team has them under their rookie contract. I think you want to know what you have so you can either make efforts to resign/extend them which is when they will make a lot more $$$ or to move on from them. People seem to forget that he would only be in his 3rd year of college if he’d stayed. But so far, his numbers are decent considering he hasn’t had much around him in terms of leadership. Who knows, he might need 2 or 3 years to mature, time the Lakers don’t have if he wants big $$$ to stay.

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    • Luke Adams

      You may be thinking of the amnesty provision? No limits on the stretch provision — if you really wanted to, you could use it on everyone on your team.

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  3. Dionis

    Maybe he gives it a run with Lebron in Cleveland for one year and just signs with LA next off-season. The Cavs would be hands down favorites with George,Lebron, and Irving. George is a two way player and won’t be scoring 6 points in a closeout game in the playoffs. Love is a phenomenal player but he plays horrible against the Warriors. Pacers should not mind George leaving, Turner looks like he could he a combination of Deandre Jordan and Aldridge 2 years down the line. Move George to LA for Russell,Randle, and the 28th pick. Sign Griffin also.

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  4. dlevin11

    What about Love to Pacers for George. Then George and Lebron have a full year together before they both become free agents and move to Lakers.

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    • JT19

      Lol the Lakers don’t have enough money to sign one of them to a max contract, let alone both.

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  5. JT19

    While I don’t think the Lakers should be giving up their best assets for George at this point (considering the Pacers leverage is basically non existant), it’d be a mistake for the Lakers not to at least push a competitive trade offer for him. If Cleveland decides to seriously pursue George, then the Lakers have to answer if they want to guarantee him going to LA. George’s biggest problem with the Pacers is the fact that they are no longer able to seriously contend for a championship as long as LeBron/Kyrie remain in Cleveland. While playing in LA obviously holds sentimental value to George, he’d be a hypocrite if he bolted to the Lakers (via free agency, not trade) after basically complaining about the Pacers not putting a competitive team around him. Even with the #2 pick, Ingram, Russell, Randle, and whoever else would be in LA if/when George goes there, the team would still be another two years, at the least, from being a serious contender and would definitely not be better than Golden State. Since the Lakers are still a couple of years from being a serious contender, I do think George would consider resigning with another team like the Cavs because they would offer him the immediate chance to play for a championship contender.

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  6. dodgerfan711

    Mozgov and Deng wont get in the way. Lakers will amnesty one of them next year and hopefully trade the other

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    • Ghost

      Stretch*. Amnesty no longer exists. But Mosgov has value in to cap floor teams because he technically has 1 year left on his contract and the other 2 years are essentially team options but if waived the 3rd year isnt a team option(from what I remember i could be wrong) But the lakers would need to pair Mosgov with a future first round pick a la the warriors-utah trade with Andris Biedrins to open up room for Andre Iguodala. Deng has zero value anymore plus he makes more than mosgov and is fully guaranteed for 3 more years.

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  7. showty

    Lakers whole team team rite now doesn’t fit together… don’t really c wat PG-13 sees in that move tire now… if anything it’s a super bad move 4 his career and getting ah ring….y would u move to the west we’re the most dominant team in years is?? wen u can even beat LeBron…. with ah far better team??! just bad career move… maybe even stupid

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    • Chris

      Bro seems like you went out of your way to use terrible spelling and grammar. None the less, Lakers have a really good core of young players. Add PG13, plus the leadership of one of LA’s and basketball’s all time greats in Magic Johnson and the Lakers go from lottery team to borderline playoff team. Now it just takes one more star to take one of the most famous teams in all of sports back to being a contender. Do that in LA and you’re a megastar

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