The Los Angeles Lakers have arguably put together the best offseason of any team in the NBA. After falling just short in the Western Conference Finals, the front office was able to bring back the same core with additions to the rotation.
One of those additions was Gabe Vincent, who is coming off of an NBA Finals run with the Miami Heat. Los Angeles signed Vincent to a three-year, $33 million contract and while most fans were excited, there were some reasons to be concerned. While Vincent was great in the NBA Playoffs, he has not been consistent in the regular season in his NBA career.
It may have been a slight overpay by the Lakers but after seeing what other free agents signed for it is clear that the market is inflated. At the very least, Rob Pelinka made Vincent’s new contract much sweeter with a savvy trick that is going to give the team an advantage in the future.
Lakers have an advantage in the future buyout market
The buyout market can yield some true difference-makers for NBA teams and the Lakers could find that final piece of the puzzle that fits into the playoff rotation. Just look at Kevin Love with the Miami Heat last season. Love signed with Miami after being bought out by the Cleveland Cavaliers and played a big role in Miami’s rotation.
Los Angeles was already going to be one of the front runners for ring-chasing buyout options because of the talent on the roster and the fact that living in LA as an athlete is a special experience. With this extra money, it is hard to see any team beating the Lakers’ offer.
Buyout signings always sign for the league minimum but with the Lakers having a bit extra cash to splash towards a buyout they will be able to outbid other suitors. That absolutely will be enough to break any potential ties between the Lakers and a team like the Phoenix Suns.
It is the small decisions like this that separate a great front office from a good front office and with how the Lakers have operated over the last six months, they are a great front office. If the team ends up signing a big-name buyout target in February be sure to thank Rob Pelinka and Gabe Vincent.