Lakers Rumors: Latest Buzz on James Ennis Interest, Miles Simon's New Role

Jake RillFeatured Columnist IIAugust 13, 2021

Orlando Magic forward James Ennis III (11) shoots in the first half during an NBA basketball game against the Utah Jazz Saturday, April 3, 2021, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)
Rick Bowmer/Associated Press

A busy offseason for the Los Angeles Lakers may not be over yet. Ahead of the return of league play in October, it's possible the team could make additional transactions to upgrade its roster after giving it a substantial overhaul in recent weeks.

The Lakers may have quite a few older players, but that means there's no shortage of experience and leadership. Plus, a big three of LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook is going to be difficult for any opponent to try to stop.

Will the moves (both completed and potentially upcoming) be enough for Los Angeles to win a second NBA title in three seasons? For now, here's some of the latest buzz surrounding the Lakers.


Lakers Interested in Signing Ennis?

While the Lakers have been busy since the start of free agency, they may not be done adding to their roster. Rumors continue to list certain players as targets for Los Angeles.

One of them is James Ennis III, as NBA reporter Marc Stein recently noted that the small forward is "a name that's been mentioned for the Lakers." Stein also noted that "wing depth is more important than a backup guard" in terms of what L.A. may still be looking to add.

The 31-year-old is a seven-year NBA veteran who has played for seven teams. Last season, he averaged a career-high 8.4 points and 4.0 rebounds in 41 games for the Orlando Magic. It was the first time he played for only one team in a season since he was with the Memphis Grizzlies in 2016-17.

While Ennis wouldn't start for the Lakers (like he did 37 times for the Magic in 2020-21), he would be another solid role player for them to add to their rotation. However, it is worth noting that Los Angeles has already brought in several free-agent wing players, including Carmelo Anthony and Trevor Ariza.

Stein also reported that the Lakers have "weighed the potential signing of Isaiah Thomas." But if Los Angeles prefers a wing over a point guard, then Ennis may be a more distinct possibility.

Either way, it's clear the Lakers are still searching the free-agent market and could be giving out another deal in the near future.


Simon Taking Over as G League Head Coach?

Miles Simon has been an assistant coach for the Lakers since 2017, and he will continue to be on head coach Frank Vogel's staff for the 2021-22 season. However, it also seems Simon is going to have some increased responsibilities next season.

According to ESPN's Zach Lowe, the Lakers are having discussions with Simon about him becoming the head coach of the South Bay Lakers, who are Los Angeles' G League team. However, Simon would also retain his spot on Vogel's staff, per Lowe.

Simon, who had a brief playing career in the NBA (five games for the Magic in 1999), didn't have a ton of coaching experience before joining the Lakers. He served as an assistant at the University of Arizona, his alma mater, from 2005 to 2008.

After his spell with the Wildcats, Simon spent some time working as an analyst for ESPN.

The South Bay Lakers, who play their home games in El Segundo, California, have been a team since 2006. Their previous head coach was Coby Karl, the son of former NBA head coach George Karl. However, he confirmed in a recent Instagram post that he and the organization were parting ways.