Los Angeles Lakers 11 MONSTER Signings Of 2021
Just how good were these Lakers signings???
The Los Angeles Lakers are lined up to win the NBA Championship in 2021 with a roster that would have been the greatest to ever be formed had it happened ten years ago. In today’s video, we are going to be talking about every free agent signing that the Lakers made this past offseason and how they could impact this roster. Be sure to stick around until the end of the video to find out their biggest pickup of the entire offseason! And with that, let’s get started on this video!
Number eleven. First things first, probably their least impactful free agent pickup would be DeAndre Jordan. Back in his prime, Jordan would be giving this roster a tremendous boost but nowadays, likely won’t get much playing time. He spent his last season as a member of the Brooklyn Nets alongside Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant but grew frustrated with his lack of playing time. Specifically, the fact he didn’t touch the floor much at all throughout their entire postseason run. Jordan will be bringing a veteran mindset and another big body on the floor for the Lakers, who like to run with a lot of size out there.
Number ten. Kent Bazemore goes next on this list. Bazemore has never been a true superstar anywhere but has always remained a solid three and D player. He has a nice wingspan and could defend multiple positions. However, he has had serious issues with his shooting consistency and ability to put the ball on the floor and create his own shot. He definitely won’t be seeing starter minutes barring any injuries to the Lakers current starters but should be an integral part of this revamped bench mob. Bazemore’s three-point shooting will be incredibly helpful this season though, as the Lakers couldn’t seem to outshoot teams even if their lives were on the line.
Number nine. Next, we have Wayne Ellington. I went back and forth regarding both Bazemore and Ellington but ended up giving Ellington the edge. Both of these players are wildly similar. In my opinion, Wayne has been a far more consistent shooter that could dribble while Bazemore made up for that difference with his length and defensive ability. I think that the two of these players will work great on the floor together and could give them a huge offensive spark if their scoring starts to drop. You also have to remember that this is a team that has LeBron James still. Even if his scoring isn’t like where it used to be, he is still one of the greatest passers in the game right now. Ellington and Bazemore should consistently get open looks out on the perimeter to cash in on. Given how I mentioned Bazemore’s inconsistency, I think Ellington will thrive much more in that role. Just like Bazemore though, he probably won’t be on the floor with the other starters much at all unless they just want to mix things up halfway through the year. He will be coming off the bench.
Number eight. Moving forward, we have Talen Horton-Tucker. The reason he is coming in so low on this list is because he technically wasn’t a signing at all, otherwise he would be among the top of the list here. Tucker was a restricted free agent, meaning he basically had a 90 percent chance of returning to the team in the offseason. The only possible way he wouldn’t be returning is if the Lakers chose not to match another offer and allow him to walk away, which they weren’t going to let their best young player do. Los Angeles has very little young talent on this current roster, meaning Horton-Tucker could learn a hell of a lot from these experience veterans. He also proved the last year and a half that he could be a viable scoring option on a team that doesn’t really need one right now. Talen can put the ball out on the floor and create his own shot while being able to work some magic in the pick and roll game. I was seriously impressed with his development in 2020 and believe that with the help he is going to be getting this season, he could turn into a fantastic player.
Number seven. Trevor Ariza. Ariza has bounced around to numerous different teams in the past couple of years, but the thing is, he is still a very impactful basketball player despite his age. Ariza has a level of intensity that boosts his teammates on the floor at all times. He is a typical three and D player who loves to defend high caliber scorers while always staying ready for an open three point shot. He is another player similar to both Bazemore and Ellington, as you can clearly tell the theme that the Lakers were going for at the start of the offseason. Ariza may be winding down on his NBA career but there is no doubt that he wants to retire as an NBA champion. This could be the year he finally achieves that dream and is going to be super impactful to this Lakers squad. He is somebody that probably has one of the best chances to get into the starting lineup every once in a while, due to his ability to move around positions and accept bench roles. I am personally so excited to see how he fits in with this new crew, I thought he showed his value when he spent half a season with the Portland Trail Blazers a few years ago.
Number six. Dwight Howard. This is probably one of those moves that may not actually impact their chances of winning, but I think that the upside outweighs that, which is why he is so high on this list. Many people may not have remembered but Howard won the NBA Championship with the Lakers just two years ago in the NBA Bubble. He opted to leave the organization during the offseason and sign with the Philadelphia 76ers instead, where he was bounced early from the postseason and chose to resign with his former squad for another ring. He brings height, defense and another veteran leader into the locker room. The team was actually lacking when it came to surefire centers and bringing Howard back was the best choice that they could have made and for cheap at that. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Howard in and out of the starting lineup as they experiment with Anthony Davis playing both the four and the five spot. Also, be sure to stick around until the end of the video to find out what player was by far the best acquisitions that the Lakers made this offseason!
Number five. Then we have Rajon Rondo. Rondo is another player that comes into this season just like Dwight Howard. He won the NBA Championship with the Lakers alongside Howard in that NBA Bubble season also, and he too chose to leave the franchise in the offseason. He went to the Atlanta Hawks but was later traded to the Los Angeles Clippers to help them make a late season push. He played until the Western Conference Finals until the team was booted from contention and went back to the Lakers that summer. He may not get many minutes out on the floor, but he is a creative passer who always seems to get the most out of his teammates. There aren’t many players left in the league with his level of intelligence either, making him incredibly valuable even if he doesn’t ever play. I think it was a fantastic move bringing him back for next to nothing.
Number four. Kendrick Nunn. This was one of the most surprising pickups of the offseason. Nunn was at one point in the conversation for Rookie of the Year just two or three seasons ago. He was supposed to be an integral part of the Miami Heat’s young core but there were some issues during that last season. I guess they didn’t really see eye to eye, so they let him go. He was primed to get a huge payday but instead signed for cheap to learn behind veterans like Rondo and LeBron. Nunn could even get starting minutes if he shines during their training camp, though it isn’t likely. He won’t be very impactful on the defensive side of things, but his scoring potential is off the charts. Simply because of the fact they signed him for so little, he was arguably one of the best pickups.
Number three. Carmelo Anthony. Some may wonder why I have this signing so high up on my list. Well, the reason for that is because I seriously want Melo to succeed somewhere. Over the past couple of years, he has shown such a strong commitment to wanting to win basketball games. He went from refusing to sit on the bench to willingly accepting bench roles in order to help his team win ball games. Not to mention he used to be one of the greatest scorers that the game has ever seen. His efficiency could use some work, but his talent is still very much there. He may be aging but we all got to see how impactful he could be when he gets going. Anthony was so important to the Portland Trail Blazers success in recent years which Is why I know how great he will be here with the Lakers. Hopefully he is able to walk away from his NBA career as a champion.
Number two. Malik Monk. I could have interchanged him and Kendrick Nunn, but I thought that Monk was the better signing. He is another young player that has brilliant flashes on the NBA court but was signed for pennies. He was never fully utilized on the Charlotte Hornets, and when he really got to see extended minutes, he rewarded the organization with big 30 plus point performances on high efficiency. His defense isn’t where you would like but his handling, shooting and overall scoring ability will fit in perfectly next to James, Davis and players like Rondo. I would expect him to get the starting nod early on in the season unless he doesn’t get to perform very well. Then he would spend the majority of the year coming off the bench, which is probably going to work for him also. With so many veteran leaders on this squad, grabbing a young player like Monk to learn and progress like Horton-Tucker is phenomenal. It was such a stellar job by their upper management by going and grabbing him in free agency.
Number one. Finally, we have their best acquisition of the offseason by a long shot. The Lakers traded for Russell Westbrook. Yep, you heard that correctly. Westbrook has long been one of the greatest statistical point guards in NBA history but recently bounced around teams a small bit. Once he left the Oklahoma City Thunder, he joined the Houston Rockets, then the Washington Wizards and now the Lakers. He is a triple double machine that can contribute in fastbreak situations, passing and intense defense. Russ makes up for all of his flaws with his heart and athleticism, something that is going to greatly benefit this Lakers roster full of aging veterans. They also didn’t really give up that much for him, just Montrezl Harrell, Kyle Kuzma and a couple of picks. The same package that they were rumored to be giving up for Buddy Hield. It was just an all-around great decision to make that trade and now they have a completely loaded roster to rival the Nets with Harden, Irving and Durant. This squad is dangerous, and I seriously believe that a lot of these guys are going to be picking up their first ring in a couple of months.
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