Success No. 2 – Bringing Gabe Vincent to Los Angeles
Hot off a run to the NBA Finals, the Miami Heat held two coveted pieces in NBA free agency, Max Strus and Gabe Vincent. While Strus joined the Cleveland Cavaliers to help their wing production, the Lakers targeted and signed Miami’s point guard Gabe Vincent on a three-year, $33 million contract.
The 26-year-old undrafted guard joined the Heat in 2019 and gradually earned a larger role over four seasons. Vincent’s production in Miami improved steadily each season. In the recent playoff run, Vincent started in all 22 performances, averaging 12.7 points on 50.6 efficient field goal percentage and dished out 3.5 assists.
Over the past few seasons, the Lakers have had a constant rotation of point guards on the roster, from Lonzo Ball to Russell Westbrook. Dennis Schroder had two short campaigns with Los Angeles but was not re-signed this summer in favor of D’Angelo Russell and Vincent.
Though Russell inked a new deal, his future in LA is still in the air, meaning Gabe Vincent may become an instrumental piece to the Lakers’ future. Though his game is imperfect, Vincent has shown willingness to understand and play his role both on offense and defense.
Vincent is far from a defensive anchor or serious 3-point threat (33.9 percent over his career), but his fit is clear next to LeBron James and Anthony Davis. Acquiring a talented role player in Gabe Vincent for the full MLE secures a consistent backcourt leader for the coming years. His mix of team-centric playstyle and playoff experience will become invaluable for the club both now and in the post-Lebron era.
Finally, the Lakers signed a high-profile free agent in a surprising late-summer move.