Lakers head coach Frank Vogel said Waiters will not suit up on Sunday against the Clippers and it could be a few games before he’s on the court in the purple and gold.
“He hasn’t played all year. [Markieff Morris] was different — he had been playing games for the Pistons. So Dion has played three games this year, so it’s a matter of acclimating, getting used to our system and getting a few practices under his belt,” Vogel said on Saturday. “The biggest thing is letting him get his legs under him.”
The Lakers play on Sunday against the Clippers and have home games against the Nets and Rockets on the schedule on Tuesday and Thursday, respectively.
Dion Waiters Ready to Move Past Tough Year
Waiters averages 13.2 for his career, although he has played in just the three games this season. He was suspended three times by the Miami Heat for various incidents, the most notable being an incident with a THC edible.
The Heat also suspended him for what they dubbed as “unprofessional conduct,” which included complaining on the bench during the preseason and not participating in a weigh-in.
Shortly after breaking the news of Waiters signing, Shams Charania of The Athletic offered some insight on the move, including a key note that the Lakers “reserve the option to release” Waiters if things aren’t going how they desire. Waiters is signed to a prorated minimum deal.
Charania also reported that Waiters “owned up to his mistakes and errors in Miami” during his workout.
“I definitely see a guy ready to move past that,” Vogel said of Waiters. “I’m definitely not going to get into details of what the conversation was like, but we’re aware of his journey.
“He’s definitely a player that can help us. He’s got the ability to put the ball on the floor and attack from the wing position. He can play off the ball with his catch-and-shoot game as well. He’s an athletic, tough defender. He’s definitely someone that can help us.”
Dion Waiters Willing to Take his Time Getting Back
Waiters sounds OK getting back into the swing of things before making his Lakers debut. He spoke to the reporters about how the transition has been on Saturday.
“I’m just trying to get my feet wet and get back into the rhythm of things like that, and figure out the plays, and still get to know the guys.”I knew most of the guys. We all grew up on AAU circuits and things like that, so it wasn’t hard for me. It was easy for me to just come in here and be myself — I don’t need to be nobody I’m not. They opened the doors for me, welcomed me in with open arms, so it’s been smooth — like, really, really good.”