Despite leaving his position as president of basketball operations for the Lakers, Magic Johnson has remained extremely vocal on the franchise’s pivotal offseason. Using his medium of choice, Twitter, Johnson has frequently spouted his thoughts on other big Laker events – like the Anthony Davis trade.
Despite walking out on the team and airing some dirty laundry regarding the front office and team operations, Johnson has repeatedly stood behind the Lakers acquisitions and gameplan this offseason since his departure. Always the optimist regarding the Lakers, with room for a max salary now in play, his optimism may finally be justified.
Magic Johnson Praises Lakers Ownership After Salary Dump Trade
Magic is excited for Sunday and rightfully so! The free agency moratorium begins on June 30th (Sunday) and with enough room to offer anyone (except KD) a max salary, it should be interesting to see who the Lakers go after and how to build their roster.
Once again, Johnson went out of his way to praise not only Rob Pelinka but also Lakers owner Jeanie Buss for pulling off a “big move” to set themselves up for a big free agency. While they only have three players currently rostered, those players are LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and Kyle Kuzma – a very solid core to build from.
Lakers Free Agency Options After Salary Dump
With now $32 million available in cap space, the Lakers can either go after a top tier free agent who would command a max salary or use the money to build a solid supporting cast around LeBron James and Anthony Davis. If the Lakers opt to sign a max player, the would have the “room exception” (worth roughly $4.7 million) to sign another player before having to rely on signing players to veteran minimum contracts in order to fill out the rest of the roster. While this is extremely top heavy, there should be an abundance of quality players available on relatively cheap deals this offseason due to such a heavy crop of stars commanding max money at the top of the food chain.
On the other hand, the Lakers could simply divide that $32 million up between a number of players to surround LeBron and AD with proven shooters and defenders. Patrick Beverly’s name has been thrown around frequently as well as Danny Green. The Lakers could even have money to possibly go after a true center – like Nikola Vucevic – and still be able to bring on board a few more members for the supporting cast before dipping into the veteran minimum pile.