The Los Angeles Lakers intentionally left one roster spot open for one reason or another. While it might be a way for the front office to save money, it also gives the team the ability to bring in a buyout target without having to release any other players.
Unfortunately, the Lakers were unable to capitalize on the first wave of buyout targets with some choosing head-scratching reasons to spurn Los Angeles. Others were great fits but couldn’t sign with LA because of silly NBA rules.
Now the Lakers are forced to choose from those who remain and the options are not the best. While things can change and others may become available, the best options for Los Angeles are not as good as they were a week ago.
Ranking the 3 best remaining Lakers buyout targets:
3. Serge Ibaka
As mentioned, the options that the team has to pursue in the buyout market are not great. When Serge Ibaka makes the cut you know that Los Angeles does not have many great options. But alas, Ibaka could still add something to the Lakers.
Suddenly, this is a Lakers team that is very young and lacks much experience outside of LeBron James and Anthony Davis. Getting another veteran in the locker room simply for the sake of having one could be beneficial for the Lakers as they make this stretch run.
It also does not hurt to have another big behind Mo Bamba that can space the floor. Neither Jarred Vanderbilt nor Wenyen Gabriel can shoot the basketball and while Ibaka has struggled this season, he has showcased in the recent past that he can hit shots from beyond the arc.
At the very least, Los Angeles gets a veteran with experience and another body to throw at someone like Nikola Jokic in a playoff series. At best, the team can get someone who checks in for eight minutes a game in a playoff series to take 2-3 threes and call it a night.