Lakers Bring Back Former Starter With Final Roster Spot

Avery Bradley

Getty Avery Bradley is heading back to the Lakers.

The Los Angeles Lakers are reuniting with Avery Bradley as the team revealed they claimed the veteran guard off waivers after he was released by the Golden State Warriors. The move combined with Los Angeles signing Jay Huff to a two-way contract now gives the Lakers a full roster.

Bradley signed with the Warriors in September and was believed to have a “real chance” to make the final roster, per The Athletic’s Anthony Slater. The Warriors opted to release Bradley just days before they tipoff the regular season against the Lakers on October 19.

“Bradley is coming off a couple of down seasons but was one of the league’s stingiest individual defenders earlier in his career, and he’s only 30,” Slater detailed on September 24. “He’s been given the impression, per a source, that he will have a real chance to make the roster and, with Thompson out early in the season, there’s a clear path to playing time if he rediscovers his old form, which would catapult him back onto the market next summer.”

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Bradley Started 44 Games During the Lakers Championship Season in 2019-20

Bradley started 44 games during the team’s championship season in 2019-20 but opted out of the NBA Bubble at Disney. The guard averaged 8.6 points, 2.3 rebounds and 1.3 assists during his season with the Lakers. During a January interview on Posted Up with Chris Haynes, Bradley admitted he felt like he missed out by not playing with the team in the postseason.

“Of course, you want to run it back,” Bradley explained. “After them winning a championship and me not being there to experience it with them, I want that feeling with the guys and the organization that I was able to build that bond with and that special run with. Even though I knew we could potentially lose someone, I still wanted to feel that with that core group of guys that I was battling with all year. It was hard. I thought I was going back.”

Lakers Roster & Projected Depth Chart

Here is a look at the Lakers final roster heading into the regular season. It remains to be seen if Anthony Davis will indeed start at center as many have anticipated.

C- Anthony Davis, DeAndre Jordan, Dwight Howard, Jay Huff (two-way)
PF- LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, Sekou Doumbouya (two-way)
SF- Kent Bazemore, Trevor Ariza
SG- Wayne Ellington, Talen Horton-Tucker, Malik Monk, Avery Bradley, Austin Reaves
PG- Russell Westbrook, Kendrick Nunn, Rajon Rondo

Bradley Is on a Non-Guaranteed Deal With the Lakers

The Lakers had previously indicated they were aiming to hold an open roster spot for a potential mid-season move. Instead, the Lakers opted to add Bradley giving the team a full roster. The decision was likely impacted by the recent injuries sidelining several Lakers wing players. Hoops Hype’s Yossi Gozlan noted that Bradley may not be a permanent addition to the roster once the Lakers get back to full strength.

“Avery Bradley is on a non-guaranteed deal so I can see the Lakers waiving him once Talen Horton-Tucker and Trevor Ariza get healthy,” Gozlan tweeted on October 18. “It would cost the Lakers $7M in combined payroll and luxury tax expenses if Bradley becomes guaranteed and finishes the season with them.”

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