Mitch Kupchak has already extended an exploratory offer to Knicks free agent Chris Copeland, and it sounds like he’s been in pursuit of former Lakers reserve Matt Barnes as well.
Barnes was with the Lakers from 2010-12, but went to the Clippers last season and was a key player off the bench. Jared Zwerling of ESPN.com reported that Barnes is now choosing between the two tenants of Staples Center:
Hearing Matt Barnes could sign with either the Lakers or Clippers for around the mini mid-level. Obviously D-Howard situation is priority.
— Jared Zwerling (@JaredZwerling) July 5, 2013
Barnes averaged 10.3 points last year and would be Metta World Peace’s primary back-up as the Lakers look to add perimeter players after the departure of Earl Clark.
While the numbers weren’t the greatest for Barnes during his tenure with the Lakers, he brought a tough-minded defensive mentality, something that was lacking all of last season.
However, the Lakers off-season remains in-flux until Howard makes his decision, but it sounds like they’re a finalist for Barnes’s services.
In case you missed it, be sure to check out what Kobe Bryant Said To Dwight Howard!
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