March 12, 2015
Los Angeles Lakers Rumors: Rajon Rondo A Major Offseason Target, With Kobe Bryant As Lead Recruiter

The Los Angeles Lakers are rumored to be making an offseason run at guard Rajon Rondo, a roster move that has the approval and even support of Kobe Bryant.

Rondo nearly made his way to Los Angeles earlier this season when the Boston Celtics put him on the trade block, but the Lakers ended up being outbid by the Dallas Mavericks. But now reports indicate that Rondo won't be staying in Dallas after this season, and the Lakers may already be making their move.

Kobe Bryant is rumored to be the driving force behind the bid for Rondo. Sources say the team is giving Kobe a lot of say in the free agent pickups, with next season likely to be the last for the 36-year-old guard. Rondo is reportedly a favorite of Bryant, and Kobe's made no secret of it, meeting Rondo for breakfast a few weeks back.

Rajon Rondo seems to know what's going on, but said he isn't interested in listening to any pitches from Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers right now.

"When he speaks, it speaks volumes," Rondo said, via "It's an honor and a compliment that he'd want to play with a guy like me, but right now, I'm focused on winning a championship with the Dallas Mavericks. I'm focused on what I have to do right now. It's impossible to play with Kobe right now."

But the Los Angeles Lakers would be able to solve one of their biggest problems if they could attract Rondo. The team suffered a season-ending injury to guard Steve Nash and has gotten uneven play from Jeremy Lin, leaving a void in the backcourt that Rondo could fill nicely.

Rondo may not be the only offseason target for the Lakers, who are going into the offseason with a good amount of cap space.

Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders noted, "So real money, let's peg the Lakers at $22.1 million to play with, that's enough for one serious max contract to an established veteran like [Greg] Monroe, Rondo or Love – and all three are said to be willing to meet with the Lakers this summer."

If the rumors about the Los Angeles Lakers targeting Rajon Rondo are true, they might have some tough competition. The New York Knicks and Houston Rockets are also said to be interested, and the Mavericks are expected to make a bid to sign Rondo to a long-term deal.

[Image via Getty]