Ranking Lakers free agents by likelihood to return next season

The Los Angeles Lakers have 10 players entering free agency in 2024. Who is most likely to be re-signed and who might be on their way out this summer?
Los Angeles Lakers v New Orleans Pelicans - Play-In Tournament
Los Angeles Lakers v New Orleans Pelicans - Play-In Tournament / Jonathan Bachman/GettyImages
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Before any new additions can shake things up for the Los Angeles Lakers, a number of crucial decisions must be made. Between player options, restricted free agents, and talents who are hitting the open market unrestricted, Los Angeles needs to decide which parts of its past will carry into its future.

With 10 pending free agents and another who has already simplified the process, the Lakers could look incredibly different as soon as next season.

LeBron James and D'Angelo Russell headline an intriguing class of Lakers turned possible free agents. A number of players who are less high-profile may still be of significant value to the Lakers, however, especially with limited cap flexibility to aid in adding new players in free agency.

Fortunately for Los Angeles, one potential free agent has already committed to a future with the franchise, thus giving the team eight players who are officially signed through 2024-25.

Honorable Mention: Christian Wood, Player Option

One of the great per 36 phenoms in the NBA, Christian Wood is a player who has produced borderline All-Star numbers at the peaks of his career. Between 2020-21 and 2022-23, he averaged 18.1 points, 8.9 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.1 blocks, and 1.7 three-point field goals made in 29.3 minutes per game.

Unfortunately, Wood was unable to build upon that success in Los Angeles, as he averaged just 6.9 points and 5.1 rebounds while shooting a mere 30.7 percent from beyond the arc.

2023-24 seems like more of an outlier than a reason to write Wood off. He shot 51.8 percent from the field and 37.9 percent from three-point range across his first eight NBA seasons, making his inefficiency in Los Angeles a bit easier to write off as a down season.

If Wood, who's in the prime of his career at 28 years of age, is able to return to form, then he could be the value add that the Lakers hoped he would be.

As for the reason Wood is listed as an honorable mention: He's already accepted his player option for the 2024-25 season, and will thus be back in the purple and gold.