One week ahead of the October 31 deadline, the Lakers have picked up their 2018/19 team options on forwards Brandon Ingram and Larry Nance Jr., the team announced today in a press release. The moves will fully guarantee the two players’ salaries through the ’18/19 season.
Although Ingram has struggled to make a consistent impact on the court for the Lakers since being selected with the second overall pick in the 2016 draft, the decision to pick up his 2018/19 option was a no-brainer for the club. It will count against L.A.’s cap for $5,757,120 next season.
As for Nance, he has impressed Lakers decision-makers with his play this fall and usurped Julius Randle as the team’s starting power forward. It’s a small sample, but through three games this season, Nance’s per-minute numbers have soared — he’s averaging 18.5 points and 11.5 rebounds per 36 minutes, compared to 11.2 and 9.2 last year. His fourth-year option for 2018/19 will count for $2,272,391 against the Lakers’ cap.
Nance will be eligible for a contract extension next offseason, and if he’s not extended, he’ll be on track for restricted free agency in 2019. Ingram is under team control for one additional year, so the Lakers will have to decide on his 2019/20 team option a year from now.