NBA Rumors: Kobe's Approval of Gilbert Arenas Is Good for Lakers' Awful Bench

Austin GreenCorrespondent IFebruary 11, 2012

ATLANTA, GA - APRIL 28:  Gilbert Arenas #1 of the Orlando Magic drives to the basket against Josh Smith #5 and Al Horford #15 of the Atlanta Hawks during Game Six of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs at Philips Arena on April 28, 2011 in Atlanta, Georgia.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Kobe Bryant reportedly reached out to Gilbert Arenas, which is good news for the Los Angeles Lakers and their terrible second unit.

Don't get me wrong, Arenas would be far from a saving grace in L.A. At this point, the 30-year-old is just a shell of the shell of his former self.

He's been banished from two franchises and after multiple knee surgeries he is no longer capable of dropping 30 points every night like the days of old. Last year, he was legitimately awful in Orlando, posting career lows in points (8.0), assists (3.2) and shooting percentage (34.4).

However, as bad as Arenas was, I refuse to believe that all his talent just vanished. It wasn't that long ago when the Hibachi was blowing up scoreboards in every arena he stepped in.

PHOENIX - DECEMBER 19:  Gilbert Arenas #0 of the Washington Wizards hanldles the ball during the NBA game against the Phoenix Suns at US Airways Center on December 19, 2009 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Suns defeated the Wizards 121-95. NOTE TO USER: User expr
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He doesn't have great speed or athleticism anymore, but the dude should still be able to put the ball in the hole. And sadly, even another bad year from Arenas would be better than the current production the Lakers are getting from their bench.

After losing Shannon Brown and Lamar Odom, it was no secret that the Lakers bench was going to struggle. I just don't think anyone thought it would be this bad.

It may sound hyperbolic, but the Lakers might have the worst bench in NBA history. Los Angeles is only getting 22.3 points per game from Steve Blake, Metta World Peace, Andrew Goudelock, Troy Murphy and Josh McRoberts.

Jason Kapono, who only plays because of his reputation as a three-point shooter, is hitting just 33.3 percent of his attempts from behind the arc. That's barely better than the Lakers team average of 28.4, which is worst in the NBA.

Arenas won't solve L.A.'s woes from deep, but he can create a shot for himself or someone else, which is more than you can say about anyone on the Lakers not named Kobe Bryant. You certainly shouldn't expect greatness from Arenas, but if he can provide some instant offense off the bench, he will be more valuable than any of their current reserves.

Arenas may not be a sexy or even effective addition, but at this point, the Lakers have nothing to lose.