Lakers News: Dion Waiters Not Likely to Make LA Debut for 'A Few Games'

Blake SchusterCorrespondent IMarch 7, 2020

Miami Heat guard Dion Waiters (11) drives to the basket as Los Angeles Clippers guard Landry Shamet (20) defends during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Friday, Jan. 24, 2020, in Miami. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
Lynne Sladky/Associated Press

Los Angeles Lakers fans giddy to see Dion Waiters make his team debut will have to wait a bit longer. 

Speaking to the media Saturday, Lakers head coach Frank Vogel said it will be another week or so before Waiters suits up for the Western Conference leaders: 

Dave McMenamin @mcten

Frank Vogel says “it’s probably going to be a few games” before Dion Waiters gets in for the Lakers. Mentions that he didn’t play much with Miami this season so he needs sometime. So no Dion on Sunday against the Clippers.

Waiters, 28, signed with L.A. on Friday. The Memphis Grizzlies had released him Feb. 9 after they acquired the guard from the Miami Heat as part of a three-team deal.

Even before the trade to Memphis, Waiters wasn't playing starting minutes. The guard played just three games with Miami in 2019-20 and didn't make his season debut until January 24. 

He averaged 9.3 points and 3.7 rebounds per game and hit 38.5 percent of his field goals. 

The Syracuse alum was suspended for Miami's season opener for conduct detrimental to the team, and things only went downhill from there. The guard was suspended another 10 games in November after ingesting THC edibles. He was suspended again in December for six games when he posted an Instagram photo of himself on a boat celebrating his birthday after telling the Heat he was sick and couldn't play. 

Now in Los Angeles, Waiters is reunited with LeBron James, who he was previously teammates with for half a season in 2014-15 when both were with the Cleveland Cavaliers. 

It makes sense the Lakers are easing Waiters into the rotation. Having become the first team to clinch a playoff spot in the Western Conference on Friday, L.A. has the benefit of spending the rest of the year tinkering with its game plan to prepare for the postseason. 

Whenever Waiters does step on the court, it'll be his first action since January 28.