Lakers Rumors: Latest on DeAndre Jordan, LA's Center Situation, Damian Jones

Jake RillFeatured Columnist IISeptember 8, 2021

Brooklyn Nets center DeAndre Jordan warms up before the start of an NBA basketball game against the Portland Trail Blazers, Friday, April 30, 2021, in New York. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)
Mary Altaffer/Associated Press

Even though the Los Angeles Lakers have overhauled their roster this offseason, they may not be done yet. Training camp doesn't start until later this month, and their season opener isn't until Oct. 19. There's still time to make more moves.

If that's going to happen, there appears to be one position on Los Angeles' roster that has been featured in more rumors than others of late: center.

For starters, it seems the Lakers are closing in on yet another veteran player to add to their roster, which has been a common trend for the team this offseason. Dan Woike of the Los Angeles Times confirmed reports that Los Angeles has been pursuing DeAndre Jordan.

Jordan was recently traded from the Brooklyn Nets to the Detroit Pistons, but he's now finalizing a buyout with them that will allow him to then sign with the Lakers, according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. The 33-year-old Jordan is a former All-Star who will bring even more experience to Los Angeles' roster.

But how are Anthony Davis, Dwight Howard, Marc Gasol and Jordan all going to fit on the same team? Well, they may not.

"Unsure of the roster fallout to follow, though keeping Dwight Howard, Marc Gasol and DeAndre Jordan seems unlikely," Woike tweeted.

Considering Howard was signed as a free agent earlier in the offseason, that may mean Gasol's time in Los Angeles could be nearing an end. He's only played one season with the Lakers, but he's signed through the end of the 2021-22 campaign.

Perhaps Jordan will be an upgrade, though. He may not be quite the player he was earlier in his 13-year NBA career, but he can still be a solid contributor. Last season, he averaged 7.5 points and 7.5 rebounds in 57 games (43 starts) with the Nets.

It's possible the Lakers wouldn't have pursued Jordan, though, if they had made another move earlier in the offseason, one that would have brought one of their former players back to Los Angeles.

According to NBA reporter Marc Stein, the Lakers had "strong interest" in reacquiring Damian Jones, who played for the team briefly last season. The 26-year-old center played for three teams during the 2020-21 campaign, which included an eight-game stint in Los Angeles.

Jones finished the season with the Sacramento Kings, and that's where he'll be to begin 2021-22 as they decided not to part ways with him, per Stein.

While Jones is younger, Jordan is a more proven player. And considering the Lakers are in win-now mode as they seek a second NBA title in three seasons, maybe the move they're reportedly making is the one that will benefit them the most.

Will that be it for Los Angeles, though? Considering how active it has been throughout the offseason, it will be interesting to see when it stops making moves and settles on its roster for the upcoming preseason.