Lakers Rumors: Latest Contract Buzz on Rajon Rondo, Avery Bradley, More

Jake RillSenior Analyst IIIMay 11, 2020

Los Angeles Lakers guard Rajon Rondo (9) during an NBA basketball game against the Golden State Warriors in San Francisco, Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
Jeff Chiu/Associated Press

Anthony Davis isn't the only Los Angeles Lakers player who holds a player option for the 2020-21 season. In fact, there are numerous other players on the Lakers roster who will have a decision to make on whether they want to opt in for another year or potentially test free agency.

For the Lakers, it takes away some power as they'll have to wait to see just how much money they'll have to spend to fill out their roster. Perhaps all five players who have player options will decide to return, leaving Los Angeles with less flexibility to stay under the salary cap. Or they could all opt out and the Lakers will have work to do in filling out their roster.

Anthony Davis ($28.75 million), Kentavious Caldwell-Pope ($8.49 million), Avery Bradley ($5 million), JaVale McGee ($4.2 million) and Rajon Rondo ($2.62 million) are the Lakers players with decisions to make regarding their options. And while Davis is clearly the best player on this list, the others are valuable role players who can play key minutes for Los Angeles.

Kyle Goon of the Orange County Register recently addressed those four players' situations and broke down the chances of each returning to the Lakers next season.

"Among those, Rondo, who has largely sat, seems like a lock to opt for another year," Goon wrote. "Bradley has started but has swayed in his offensive production, and his injury history could hurt his market elsewhere.

"McGee has outperformed his contract, but he's also at center, which is the hardest position to get paid as a role player. Caldwell-Pope might have the best market of any of these players, but that market could be slashed due to the sinking salary cap, and perhaps L.A.'s chance to win makes it a little more appealing."

As Goon pointed out, players might not be able to negotiate big deals this offseason because of the uncertain salary-cap situation. Caldwell-Pope, who has averaged 9.5 points in 63 games this season, might not want to turn down that $8.49 million option, especially considering he should continue to get solid playing time thanks to his effective play.

Bradley (averaging 8.6 points in 49 games) and McGee (started 61 games while averaging 6.8 points and 5.8 rebound) have also been solid contributors during the Lakers' successful season. And with their affordable options, the team could be pleased if both opt in for another year.

Rondo is averaging 7.1 points and 5.0 assists per game, but he's been limited to 48 games because of a finger injury. But he can help provide veteran leadership in addition to his contributions off the bench, still making him a valuable piece of a team.

While Davis is likely to return to Los Angeles (even if he declines his player option and then works out a new deal), it'd be less of a surprise if one of these other role players choose not to come back to the Lakers. So, it will be interesting to see what they decide to do when the offseason arrives, as well as how those decisions will impact the Lakers' moves to come.