Lakers Notes: Kobe’s Memorial, Waiters, Roster

Nearly a month after Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna were killed in a tragic helicopter crash, a memorial service was held today at the Staples Center to honor their memory. Lakers GM Rob Pelinka, former teammate Shaquille O’Neal, Hornets owner Michael Jordan, and Kobe’s widow Vanessa Bryant were among those who spoke at the emotional event, as an ESPN story outlines.

In addition to publicly mourning her late husband on Monday, Vanessa Bryant has also filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Island Express Helicopters Inc. and the “representative or successor” of pilot Ara Zobayan, per an ESPN and Associated Press report. The lawsuit claims that Zobayan was careless and negligent by flying in poor weather conditions rather than aborting the flight.

Here’s more on the Lakers and their late superstar:

  • Dave McMenamin of ESPN has an in-depth look at how Lakers players and staffers found out about Bryant’s death on January 26. The team was flying from Philadelphia to Los Angeles following a five-game road trip when the news broke, making for a somber, miserable cross-country flight.
  • On his latest Hoop Collective podcast, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst confirms that the Lakers met with Dion Waiters last week, as was expected. According to Windhorst (hat tip to RealGM), the team is “mulling” the idea of signing him, since it could use “perimeter player who can score a little bit.” However, L.A. will want to see what sort of condition the veteran guard is in. An earlier report suggested the Lakers may have to be won over by Waiters in the same way they were by Dwight Howard last summer.
  • In case you missed it, the Lakers officially signed Markieff Morris on Sunday, waiving DeMarcus Cousins to make room on the roster. As we relayed earlier today, Cousins and the Lakers are said to have mutual interest in a new deal in the offseason.
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14 thoughts on “Lakers Notes: Kobe’s Memorial, Waiters, Roster

  1. formerlyz

    Waiters fits several teams, including the Lakers. What do they mean by what condition he is in? He played a couple of nights before he was traded.

    • MrWood

      He might be stoned off his ass again, plus he hasn’t played in a live game since 1/28. Lakers don’t need a plump pot head with a poor man Tyreke game.

      • Fartface Wilson

        Your comment mostly sounds like you’re personally mad at Dion for hurting your feelings at some moment in your life.

        • MrWood

          Not at all. I couldn’t careless about him, my personal views are Dion is a waste. He had skills to be a solid pro, pissed it away with poor attitude, awful diet and lack of being a ‘pro’, as he only cares about himself and not team concept, so he’s a black hole on O and a piss poor Defender. He’s gonna be out of league and is trying to save his fading career but he and his agent are dumb enough to believe every team in league except a possible desperate Lakers are going to scoop him up. Maybe if you hadn’t pissed it all away, you wouldn’t be trying to piss down everyone’s back and tell us it’s rain. No more redemption stories, Lakers are smart to see if he’s stoned out of his mind and more importantly did he pack on another freshman 15 over the last 30 days. It’s Dion Waiters.

        • Luckylefty2

          Dude waiters is known for always being out of shape. You must be his agent or something.

  2. Skip, Tampa

    As compared to what, bench so bad they barely see the court at game time.
    He can easily get the daily rate on a minimum. Not like he hasn’t already been paid.
    Lakers actually have to think about this ?
    Now that’s funny stuff.

    • Appalachian_Outlaw

      Yeah, I don’t really see why it requires that much thought. I’d get it if they were talking committing major money, over multiple years. For a low cost bench piece, though?

  3. Jason Lancaster

    I’d bet that the Lakers aren’t sure who they want to cut for Waiters, and that as a result they’re hesitant to make a move.

    At the same time, Waiters is thinking about his next contract, and may be auditioning for a few teams to find someone that will a) give him run the rest of the season and b) offer him a deal this summer.

    He’s also probably looking at an overseas deal, as I believe he doesn’t have to forfeit any portion of his salary from Memphis if he signs a contract overseas, vs. signing a contract with another NBA team (the CBA says players who accept buyouts have to “give back” the salary they get from their new team to their old team)…but someone can probably educate me on that. :)

  4. Skip, Tampa

    Believe you are correct on the payback. Still only have to sign him for the minimum this year and next. Not a real big risk. Already been paid for this year and next.
    Waiters is playing for a 2021 contract right now.

  5. x%sure

    I don’t think it’s possible to sue the “representative or successor” of a pilot, or of anyone. Probably can’t sue his children either, darn it all. They will inherit so much. Sue the weatherman, he made the weather. Sue the mambettes for scheduling a practice so that a helicopter had to be hired to get there.

    In the link, espn gave conflicting details. The police grounded their copters because the ground couldn’t be seen?– but the doomed party didn’t care about seeing the ground, they just wanted to get up over the cloud & out, and their airport was clear. Why the fast banking descent is the question, when he wanted to get to 4000 feet. Vanessa is sueing fast, on the day of the group’s memorial, before anger fades, when his story might get a media airing. Now everyone is battening down & getting their defense together.
    Well the true story in a disaster never comes out officially regardless. ESPN won’t help.

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