After missing out on bringing Raja Bell to Los Angeles, the Lakers are reported to still be a contender in the Matt Barnes sweepstakes. Despite the reports of Barnes nearing an agreement with the Toronto Raptors it would appear that there is still a chance of the Lakers adding another perimeter player to the roster.
ESPN’s Marc Stein reports the Lakers to be among a short list of five teams that have been in negotiations to employ the services of Barnes. The former UCLA Bruin has bounced around the league over the years but has gained a reputation as a high energy player with a good touch from beyond the arc.
Most recently, Barnes attempted to unseat Raja Bell as Kobe Bryant Enemy #1. During a regular season contest in Orlando, Barnes did his best to unnerve KB24 through some uninspired trash talk and sophomoric taunting. However, unlike the Bell situation, Bryant is not reported to be meeting with Barnes.
The 6’7” swingman would give the Lake Show more versatility off the bench in addition to helping stretch opposing defenses with his shooting range. Opting out of the second year of a two year deal in Orlando would indicate that Barnes either desires a raise or is seeking to play with a title contender (read between the lines – no offense Dwight Howard).