The Los Angeles Lakers roster is starting to look very different than it did less than 24 hours ago. Not only have the Lakers agreed to terms with LeBron James, Los Angeles was also aggressive in signing veterans to surround James with. Here’s what we know so far on the Lakers roster and free agent signings.
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope agreed to a one-year, $12 million contract. The Lakers are also going to bring in James’ former nemesis, Lance Stephenson, on a one year, $4.5 million deal. JaVale McGee is also headed to Los Angeles on what is expected to be a small, one-year contract. Keep in mind, the Lakers cannot officially sign any players until July 6 at 12 p.m. Eastern, at the earliest.
Here’s a look at what the Lakers roster looks like with the latest signings.
Lakers Roster & Starting Lineup With LeBron James for 2018-19
C- JaVale McGee, Mo Wagner, Ivica Zubac
PF- Kyle Kuzma, Isaac Bonga
SF- Brandon Ingram, Luol Deng, Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk
SG- LeBron James, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Lance Stephenson, Josh Hart
PG- Lonzo Ball, Rajon Rondo, Alex Caruso
Lakers free agents: Julius Randle (UFA), Brook Lopez (UFA), Channing Frye (UFA), Travis Wear (RFA), Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (UFA), Andre Ingram (RFA), Gary Payton II (RFA), Isaiah Thomas (UFA)
The status of Julius Randle, who is a restricted free agent, appears in doubt. NBA TV’s David Aldridge reported that Randle does not want to return to Los Angeles.
“Julius Randle has made it clear that I don’t think he really wants to be back there, so are you putting money into a guy that doesn’t really want to be back there,” Aldridge reported per Silver Screen and Roll.
Lakers Cap Space for 2018-19: $2.1 Million
According to ESPN’s Bobby Marks, the Lakers only have $2.1 million in cap space based on all the reported signings. This number does include a $12.4 million cap hold for Randle, and the Lakers could gain some additional cap space by making him an unrestricted free agent. The Lakers qualifying offer made Randle a restricted free agent, meaning the Lakers could match any offer. If the Lakers elect to re-sign Randle, they are able to go over the cap to sign him.
Lakers Free Agent Signing 2018
|SF LeBron James||4 year, $153.3 million|
|SG Kenatvious Caldwell-Pope||1 year, $12 million|
|SG Lance Stephenson||1 year, $4.5 million|
|C Javale McGee||1 year, $2.4 million|
Lakers Cap Space 2019: $23 Million
Fans may notice a trend to the Lakers signings. With the exception of James, Los Angeles is only bringing in players on one-year deals which allows them to be players in free agency in the summer of 2019. This would change a bit if the Lakers were to trade for Kawhi Leonard, but L.A. would also have to trade salaries in that deal as well.
According to Marks, the Lakers are currently projected to have $23 million in cap space next summer. This could increase to $41.3 million if the Lakers could find a home for Luol Deng. The 2019 free agent class includes Leonard along with other players like Klay Thompson and Jimmy Butler.