Lakers free agency: Ranking the best available free agent centers in 2024

The Los Angeles Lakers are in the market for a center who can play alongside Anthony Davis. Who are the best available centers in free agency?
Philadelphia 76ers v New York Knicks - Game Two
Philadelphia 76ers v New York Knicks - Game Two / Sarah Stier/GettyImages
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2. Nic Claxton, UFA

Nic Claxton has been one of the best-kept secrets in the NBA for the entirety of his career. The Brooklyn Nets center stands at 6'11" with a 7'3" wingspan and has showcased the potential to be one of the best defensive bigs in the Association.

Claxton is another player who's likely to be priced out of the Rob Pelinka's price range, but it wouldn't hurt to explore this possibility.

Claxton finished the 2023-24 regular season with averages of 11.8 points, 9.9 rebounds, 2.7 offensive rebounds, 2.1 assists, and 2.1 blocks per game. He did so in just 29.9 minutes per contest, meaning his numbers translate to 14.3 points, 12.0 rebounds, 3.3 offensive boards, 2.5 assists, and 2.5 blocks per 36 minutes.

For a Los Angeles Lakers team that desperately needs to improve on the offensive glass, as well as protecting the rim when Anthony Davis isn't on the court, Claxton would be a massive signing.

The obvious downside here is that Claxton is likely to be paid well beyond what the Lakers are able to afford outright this summer. As such, a sign-and-trade would be required, and that puts Los Angeles at the mercy of the Brooklyn Nets' requested return.

Nevertheless, it's an intriguing combination to consider. It wouldn't be the worst idea for the Lakers to gauge Claxton's interest in forming one of the best defensive interior duos in the NBA.