The Los Angeles Lakers may have let the 2020 February NBA trade deadline pass without making any major moves, but as of now, they continue to be active in the buyout market, finding ways to upgrade their current roster. After using the $1.75 million Disabled Player Exception to sign Markieff Morris, the Lakers recently filled their final roster spot by agreeing to a contract with Dion Waiters for the rest of the 2019-20 NBA season.
In a recent video appearance on The Stadium, which is currently posted on Twitter, Shams Charania of The Athletic revealed some interesting details of the Lakers’ acquisition of Waiters.
“In Dion Waiters, the Lakers are adding the playmaker and scorer that they have coveted this season coming off the bench,” Charania said, as quoted by SB Nation’s Silver Screen And Roll. “Waiters, his agent Rich Paul, the Lakers’ officials Rob Pelinka, Kurt Rambis, they all had positive conversations throughout the week from his workout and his meeting with the organization on Monday, and they all understood this must work out for Waiters, otherwise the Lakers reserve the option to release him, I’m told. This could be Waiters’ final opportunity here, and this is a great one for him to establish himself back with a contending, winning franchise.”
When he’s committed to the game, Waiters would no doubt address the Lakers’ need of a playmaker and scorer in their second unit. Though the Miami Heat didn’t see the need to use him in this season, Waiters would still be an incredible addition to the Lakers, especially if they quickly learn how to maximize his effectiveness on the court. However, despite knowing what he could contribute on both ends of the floor, L.A. doesn’t seem to be done upgrading their roster.
As Charania noted, after signing Waiters, the Lakers still haven’t ruled out the possibility of adding another shooter on their team. Though he didn’t specifically say that he is on the top of the list of their potential targets, Charania revealed that the team also worked out veteran shooting guard JR Smith the same day as Waiters. Smith is currently one of the best shooters available on the free agency market. Aside from having plenty of championship experience, Smith also served as a teammate of superstar LeBron James on the Cleveland Cavaliers for almost four years.
However, to bring in Smith or another shooter, the Lakers would be needing to part ways with another player on their roster. If the team pushed through with their plan to add a shooter, some of the players who could potentially be waived include Quinn Cook, Jared Dudley, or Talen Horton-Tucker.