The Los Angeles Lakers have been having one of the most intriguing offseasons in the NBA, highlighted by their use of the amnesty clause on Metta World Peace and the defection of Dwight Howard to the Houston Rockets.
However, the team is far from finished and general manager Mitch Kupchak still needs to fill out the roster for the upcoming 2013-14 campaign.
Let’s take a look at who the Lakers may have their sights on, what their plans for the future are and more in Tuesday’s rumor roundup.
Nate Robinson An Option
The Lakers’ backcourt is undergoing a major overhaul this summer, as the club has added Nick Young, Jordan Farmar and Wesley Johnson while saying goodbye to Andrew Goudelock, Darius Morris and Chris Duhon.
While that may be enough for some, Kupchak is exploring the possibility of bringing in Nate Robinson—the diminutive guard that isn’t afraid to fire up shots and instantly ignite the offense.
According to Hoopsworld’s Alex Kennedy, L.A. is one of many franchises interested in the veteran scorer that put himself back on the map with a solid performance in the 2013 playoffs with the Chicago Bulls.
Following up on @ESPNSteinLine's Nuggets tweet, I'm told Nate Robinson has also received interest from the Wizards, Bucks, Mavs and Lakers.— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) July 13, 2013
With the possibility that star shooting guard Kobe Bryant is sidelined at the beginning of the season, Robinson could be a great option to replace many of the touches the Black Mamba usually receives.
While Robinson can get a bit out of control at times and isn’t great for long stretches, coach Mike D'Antoni could get the most out of the journeyman by bringing him off the bench whenever the offense stagnates.
It’s no secret that the 2013-14 campaign is going to be a rough one for the Lakers.
This unit just lost one of its best players and is coming off one of the toughest seasons in years. However, there is still hope that things could turn around in the near future, hope that comes in the form of the 2014 draft and free-agency class.
ESPN Los Angeles’ Arash Markazi found that the team’s current plan of attack revolves around maximizing its opportunities next summer.
Lakers plan is simple. Go after bargains with one-year minimum deals this year and go for broke next year.— Arash Markazi (@ArashMarkazi) July 14, 2013
Should the Lakers sacrifice the 2013-14 season to get a solid pick in the 2014 draft?
The insider notes that the organization is doling out one-year deals—evidenced by the Johnson, Farmar and Chris Kaman contracts—in order to have a ton of cap flexibility next year.
Considering the 2014 free-agency class may be highlighted by LeBron James—and could also feature Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade, Rudy Gay, Luol Deng, Danny Granger and many more—it would be wise for L.A. to have as much space as possible to bring in as many of these superstars as possible.
Kennedy noted that LBJ would be the organization's main goal last week.
What's next for the L.A. Lakers? They'll try to make a run in the 2013-14 season and then make a run at LeBron James, according to sources.— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) July 6, 2013
Factor in that the Lakers still hold a first-round pick in the deep 2014 draft and you are looking at a club that can completely alter its direction in one offseason.
It’s going to be tough for Purple and Gold supporters to watch their squad struggle next season, but it may all be worth it in less than 12 months.