Lakers Sign Dion Waiters To Rest-Of-Season Deal

MARCH 6: The Lakers have officially signed Waiters, the team announced this afternoon in a press release.

MARCH 5: The Lakers and free agent guard Dion Waiters have agree to a deal that will cover the remainder of the 2019/20 season, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link). Los Angeles has an open spot on its 15-man roster after waiving Troy Daniels on Sunday, so no corresponding move will be required.

After starting the season with Miami, Waiters was traded to the Grizzlies at the deadline last month and was subsequently waived by Memphis. The 28-year-old had a workout for the Lakers earlier this week and was said to have made a good impression during his visit with the team, leading to today’s contract agreement.

Waiters, whose stint in Miami was derailed by health issues and his off-court behavior, was suspended by the Heat three separate times this season and has only appeared in three games in 2019/20. In his three previous seasons with the club, he averaged 14.0 PPG, 3.6 APG, and 2.9 RPG with a .414/.365/.646 shooting line in 120 total games (28.7 MPG).

It remains to be seen how much Waiters will actually play in Los Angeles, but the team had been in the market for a little more play-making and scoring on the perimeter, which he can potentially provide. The Lakers were also said to be considering J.R. Smith, who auditioned for the club earlier this week too. Both players are represented by Klutch Sports, the agency that reps LeBron James and Anthony Davis.

Rich Paul, the head of Klutch Sports, has had multiple conversations with the Lakers about Waiters, according to Charania, who notes (via Twitter) that the team is willing to release the veteran guard if things don’t work out.

[RELATED: Lakers Still Monitoring Market For Shooting Help]

Although Waiters’ contract must be guaranteed at this point of the season, it sounds like the Lakers are taking a similar approach to the one they took when they signed Dwight Howard to a non-guaranteed deal last offseason. Howard has made the most of that bounce-back opportunity in Los Angeles — we’ll see if Waiters can do the same.

Having used their disabled player exception to sign Markieff Morris, the Lakers have no available cap exceptions worth more than the minimum, so Waiters’ new deal will be worth a prorated portion of the veteran’s minimum. If he officially signs tomorrow, he’ll earn $503,656 for the rest of the season, with L.A. assuming a cap hit of $375,385.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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22 thoughts on “Lakers Sign Dion Waiters To Rest-Of-Season Deal

  1. GABEPERKINS1

    Why? Lakers already have Caruso, cook, rondo, kcp on bench backing up green and Bradley.. if they plan on playing Markieff at 4 and kuzma at 3.. whos minutes get cut? Kcp has been balling this year

    • justalittleoutside

      As great as all those guys are, they needed somebody who can get his own off the bench. Ironically, somebody like Jordan Clarkson is what they needed on this team. Waiters is the best person left that fits this bill. I heard they are 29th in efficiency when LeBron is off the court versus being 2nd in efficiency when he is on the court. That’s why they are gambling on this move working out.

  2. justalittleoutside

    I hope when he lights it up it’s on the court and not off the court.

  3. Atlantic Slim

    good pick-up. he’s going to behave on this team, and put in whatever he has to offer playing-wise.

    • jump shot

      I agree. I think Waiters will be a solid citizen the rest of the season on/off the court and in the lockerroom. I know he’s had problems but I think he realizes he had one foot out the door and he’ll do what he has to do to stay in the league. Am I giving him too much credit?

  4. nentwigs

    Lakers add WAITERS !!

    They also add Consession Staff, Dishwashers, Ticket Takers and Roving Food and Beverage Vendors.

  5. Jason Lancaster

    Super smart signing. If it works, they got a rotation guy for nothing. If it doesn’t, they send him packing and bring in JR Smith (or whomever).

  6. Danieley3

    At this point in the season, the Lakers couldn’t have done any better. He offers the most upside by far, even though I was pulling for Jamal Crawford most of the season. Crawford’s defense, however, drags down the offensive talent; Waiters can bring in solid play on both ends, with an ability to not only get hot shooting, but putting the ball on the floor and getting to the rim… Good get Lakers. It’s great unofficially having Rich Paul on Rob Pelinka’s staff.

  7. formerlyz

    Definitely a fit for them, and gives them something they’ve been missing at times. The being careful narrative is dumb, especially considering what they got him for, and I’m surprised it took this long for him to sign somewhere. Said this when Memphis traded for him and the buyout came up:

    “I can think of a few teams that could use a scoring guard that gets into the paint at will, and can facilitate, and shoot the 3. And isnt a bad defender

    Philly, Boston. Orlando, Lakers, Detroit, OKC, or Toronto off the top of my head

    I dont want to hear a single person talk about how smart some team is to pick him up when he contributes, as if it’s some surprise. The narratives around this Heat team the last couple of years has been so ridiculous”

  8. Dxit90a

    Not a big fan . He is a volume shooter and his shooting percentage across the board is low. He is also not known as a good defender and needs the ball in his hand so will not work well with LeBron. JR Smith would have been a better choice.

    • They’re bringing him in primarily for when LeBron sits. The Lakers’ main weakness right now is they can’t generate consistent (or good) offense when LeBron sits.

      • GABEPERKINS1

        Their biggest problem is they can’t generate enough defense when lebron sits.. kuzma and rondo have been brutal defensively

        • x%sure

          Yes they need Lebron to function right, as much as Ledron has tried to make that not the case and build up others. In contrast the Clippers don’t seem to require anyone in particular to run their system (if they can be said to have a system).

          I would like to see JRS playing so that I could compare him. Dxt90 may be right.
          Even Dion should be out there just to see it. I kept saying “he could help someone” when Riley iced him but I’m not sure the Lakers are the best spot for him, because they have rules they need. Maybe they need someone to break the rules in a winning way?

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