The search continues for the viable shooting guard option off the bench for the Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers may have considerably upgraded their squad with the addition of two-time NBA MVP Steve Nash, veteran forward Antawn Jamison and the re-signing of Jordan Hill, but there’s a spot yet to be filled in the form of a backup for Kobe Bryant.
Even though the Lakers are exploring a few options for a backup guard, Delonte West has emerged as a strong possibility for Los Angeles according to Dave McMenamin of ESPNLosAngeles.com:
“The Los Angeles Lakers have expressed interest in free-agent guard Delonte West, according to a league source.”
Despite a somewhat checkered past in the NBA, West is arguably one of the best free agent options left available for the Lakers. With West coming off the bench, the Lakers will have a solid backup option at both positions in the backcourt.
There’s no question with Nash at 38 years-old and Steve Blake not exactly a dependable option at point guard that West would be used at both positions. Along with the ability to light up the scoreboard in bunches, West also can stretch the defense with his outside shooting.
Last season, West averaged 9.6 points and 3.2 assists per game for the Dallas Mavericks. Not only is West another player that will help cure the offensive problems off the bench along with Jamison, but he can be force from distance with an impressive 37.2% career average from three-point land.
The only problem the Lakers may face in an attempt to sign West is whether or not he’s willing to take the veteran’s minimum. Obviously, no team is knocking down West’s door with lucrative contract offers at this point in time, but doesn’t mean the Mavs or another interested won’t ultimately give West an offer that intrigues him.
The Lakers still have the mini mid-level exception at their disposal, but GM Mitch Kupchak has said that the team has no intention to use that exception this summer. With that being said, the Lakers offer will almost certainly be a one-year deal at the veteran’s minimum.