The Los Angeles Lakers‘ patience with Dennis Schroder appears to be running thin and he might have played his last game in purple and gold.
Schroder is an unrestricted free agent and averaged 15.4 points, 5.8 assists and 1.1 steals per game last season, respectable numbers. However, the consistency was not always there and he ended the year on a rough note, flaming out in the postseason with a couple of miserable performances.
The Lakers gave Schroder an opportunity to work out of the starting lineup after functioning as a sixth man in Oklahoma City prior to the trade the brought him to LA. However, the Lakers are reportedly done running Schroder out as the starter and think he’s overvaluing himself with the $100 million number that’s floating around, per Marc Stein.
“The easiest thing would be re-signing Dennis Schroder, but Dennis Schroder wants crazy money,” Stein said on Chad Ford’s NBA Big Board. “Dennis Schroder thinks he’s a $100 million player. He’s already turned down an extension in the $80 millions, and the vibe from the Lakers really is, I think they’d rather move on from Schroder. I don’t think they see Schroder as a starter. I think they like him as a sixth man, but they want something more out of their main backcourt guy.”
There Are Differing Opinions on Schroder’s Future
While the Lakers are not thrilled with Schroder as their starting point guard, the team’s lack of assets and limited cap will make it tough for the LA to find a viable replacement, despite what the rumors might say.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski thinks Schroder is the best option for the Lakers right now.
“They cannot replace [Dennis Schroder] if he leaves,” Wojnarowski said on the Woj and Lowe show. “Almost every team I’ve talked to in the league has been offered some combination of Kuz and KCP. And that’s not going to get them back a point guard of Dennis’s stature. I still think in the end, there’s a deal to be made for him to stay with the Lakers.”
Schroder Wants to Run it Back With Lakers
Despite turning down the extension during the season, Schroder has openly said he wants to return to the Lakers and pursue a championship.
“I read so many things on Instagram,” Schroder told reporters at the end of the season. “At the end of the day, it’s my eighth season in the NBA and I just wanted to make my own decision — one time, to where I can decide where I want to go. Just to say ‘I want to re-sign with the Lakers’ or ‘I want to go somewhere else.’ That’s the only thing.
“The Lakers, they didn’t do nothing to me. They’re great, they got the top-two players, everybody in the locker room is great, so, like I said, I want to be here and win a championship. That’s not even a question.”
So if Schroder really does want to be back in Los Angeles, it comes down to how much of a perceived pay cut he’s willing to take if he wants to stick around.