With the 2014-15 NBA season coming to an end, the Los Angeles Lakers are headed to the NBA Lottery for the second consecutive season. After the loss against the Denver Nuggets on Wednesday, the Lakers have locked in the fourth worst record in the league and have an 82.8 percent chance of keeping their top-five protected pick.
Although Jordan Clarkson has had a strong rookie season, head coach Byron Scott says the franchise will build ‘with’ him instead of ‘around’ him in the NBA Draft and free agency. While some feel Clarkson is capable of starting next season, the Lakers will explore all options. According to ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne, she believes Rajon Rondo is ‘the guy’ in free agency:
Shelburne: “If you talk to the Lakers, they think there’s a lot of guys they’re in play for.”
Kellerman: “They’re going to windup with [Rajon] Rondo.”
Shelburne: “Yeah, I think Rondo is the guy. [Goran] Dragic is going to sign in Miami. I think there was a wink-wink, you know. I think he signs there for five years.”
Ireland: “I’m actually hearing that they’re not as in love with Rondo as they once were.”
Shelburne: “The best thing Rondo has going for him is that he’s great in the playoffs and Kobe has endorsed him. In other words, Kobe thinks he’s got the right stuff inside of him.”
While free agency does not officially begin until July 1, there have been numerous reports about Rondo landing with the Lakers. One report has the Lakers preferring Rondo over Dragic while another has him as a ‘mortal lock’ to sign with the franchise.
Earlier this season, the Lakers attempted to trade for Rondo, but the Boston Celtics wanted the seventh overall pick in Julius Randle. With the Lakers unwilling to part with Randle, the All-Star point guard was eventually traded to the Dallas Mavericks.
In 65 games, Rondo is averaging 8.8 points, 5.5 rebounds and 7.9 assists in 29.7 minutes.[divide]
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