With the NBA Draft in less than a week, the Los Angeles Lakers are expected to bring in Jahlil Okafor, D’Angelo Russell and Emmanuel Mudiay for second workouts. While the team has been working out prospects, free agency quickly takes place the following week.
One of the decisions the Lakers will have to make soon will be Jordan Hill’s team option. According to Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski, the franchise is unlikely to exercise the option for the 2015-16 NBA season:
As the Los Angeles Lakers maneuver to free $24 million-plus of salary cap space for summer free agency, the franchise is unlikely to exercise the option on forward Jordan Hill’s contract for the 2015-16 season, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
If the Lakers do not exercise Hill’s option, they will have the financial flexibility to pursue players like LaMarcus Aldridge and Kevin Love with a max contract:
Los Angeles wants to pursue Portland’s LaMarcus Aldridge, Cleveland’s Kevin Love and Miami’s Goran Dragic among others who could be available on the market.
While Hill is a serviceable big man who averaged career-highs in points (12.0) and rebounds (7.9) this past season, this move would provide the Lakers with more options in free agency. Depending on which player signs a max contract, the Lakers could have approximately $5-9 million to pursue a solid role player.
Although the Lakers are unlikely to exercise the option, Hill could still return to the team next season if they are unable to land their free agents.