3. Serge Ibaka is an affordable free-agent target
The Los Angeles Lakers do not have much cap space this offseason. The league just recently came to an agreement with the NBAPA regarding the start of next season, how this offseason will operate and how the cap will be impacted due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The salary cap figure is where we all expected it to be — right at $109.140 million. The luxury tax threshold was set at $132.627 million.
The Lakers are going to have two max contracts on the books with LeBron James and Anthony Davis and another hefty salary given to Danny Green. Those three players are taking up $87.3 million (just under 80%) of next year’s cap.
The Lakers need cheap options.
There are ways to go over the cap, such as using Bird Right (the Lakers have none this offseason), veteran minimum deals as well as the mid-level exception. Ibaka is worth less than the MLE, which is promising as the team could bring him in on pure cap space while using the MLE elsewhere.
John Hollinger of The Athletic (subscription required) projects Ibaka to get a $5.5 million salary next season. That is more than manageable for the Los Angeles Lakers and one that does not restrict them from making other moves.