NBA Offseason 2012: Will the Lakers Look to Bring Back Ramon Sessions?
Ramon Sessions is a frustrating player.
He was great for the Lakers when they traded for him in March, putting up 12.7 points and 6.7 assists per game.
Then he was awful during the playoffs, scoring only 9.7 points per game to go along with 3.6 assists. His field goal percentage also dropped from 47.9 to 37.7 and his three-point percentage dropped from 48.6 to 16.
Sadly for Sessions, this isn't exactly new. After all, he's played for four teams in the last four years. He's just an inconsistent player.
What does this mean for his future? Well, it depends on what role the Lakers see him playing and how much they choose to invest in that role.
It's probably for the best if Sessions comes off of the bench. He's not consistent enough to start and teams like to have guards who can score and play for spurts. It's not uncommon for bench guards to receive close to the full mid-level exception. J.J. Barea did after his marvelous run in last year's playoffs, and Sessions is actually coming off of a mid-level contract.
Since the Lakers have "Bird" rights on Sessions, they can offer him such a contract without it affecting their mid-level exception.
The question is will they?
The Buss family has made it clear that they want to shed money, especially with the new luxury tax making it harder for teams to spend too much. If they view Sessions as a bench player, they may not want to give him too much money.
If they view him as a starter though, they could see it as a bargain. Most starters make more than $4 or $5 million dollars, so if they could get Sessions to take that kind of deal they'd likely be on board.
It's a tricky situation.
The best basketball decision would be to give Sessions his money and then use the mid-level exception on a different point guard (like Raymond Felton or Andre Miller). But the Lakers might not want to deal with the financial ramifications of such a move.
So the Lakers have three options: let Sessions walk and find a replacement (the best financial move), keep Sessions and find another point guard (the best basketball move) or keep Sessions and expect him to start (the most likely move).
I don't think the Lakers are going to look too hard for a new point guard.
If they can't convince Steve Nash to come for a significant pay cut, I think they'll try to bring back Sessions as the starter. He at least showed he was a valuable role player, and they may want to give him another chance to prove his worth in the playoffs.
So expect Ramon Sessions to be back in purple and gold next year, just hope the Lakers bring him some competition.
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