With 11 players under contract for the 2010-2011 NBA season, the Lakers intend on rounding out the roster with the addition of three more players.
Two of those open spots will be reserved for the Lakers' second-round picks, Devin Ebanks and Derrick Caracter, who impressed the organization with their play in the 2010 Las Vegas Summer League.
Derrick Caracter averaged 15.4 points and 8.6 rebounds in the Las Vegas Summer League while Devin Ebanks put up 15.0 points and 3.6 rebounds per game. They would receive non-guaranteed contracts worth $473,000 each.
The 14th roster opening is expected to be filled with the return of Lakers' free-agent guard Shannon Brown. Although all signs point to the four-year veteran guard returning to the Lakers, there have been productive but slow negotiations over the monetary terms of the contract.
"We’re still talking to Shannon," Kupchak said Friday. "I think there’s a good chance that in the next couple of weeks we can have some resolution with Shannon. I’m optimistic."
The Lakers' initial contract proposal was received by agent Mark Bartelstein, who expressed Brown's satisfaction with the number of years but not the annual salary.
Although the Lakers hold Brown's Bird Rights and can offer him a contract worth as much as $5 million per season, the Lakers' front office would like to re-sign the guard at around $2 million a year. Brown's camp would prefer an annual salary of $3.5 million.
Contract negotiations will continue throughout the next couple weeks. Nevertheless, in the unlikely case that Shannon Brown does not return to Los Angeles, the Lakers' management has a list of free-agent guards willing to sign for the veteran's minimum.
That free-agent list includes former Bobcats' guard Larry Hughes, former Bulls' guard Ronald "Flip" Murray, and former Spurs' swingman Roger Mason, Jr.