After hiring Andre Drummond, the Lakers squad has an open spot.
After the team lost LeBron and Davis to injury, the board’s plans to keep the team competitive became clear with the negotiation that was not carried forward by the Raptors’ guard, Kyle Lowry, and also the addition of Drummond as mentioned above.
Drummond fulfills a need for a pivot with enough stature to score and catch rebounds. But one point that the Lakers still need to adjust, is the real need for three-point balls.
Until this Thursday, the Lakers occupied the 26th position in the classification in attempts per game of three-point balls, 28th in converted balls, and 24th in percentage hits.
For now, the Lakers have managed to stay in the top five in the Western Conference, but when the playoffs arrive, if the team has not improved its three-point index, everything can go downhill.
Rob Pelinka has in his safe an availability for a veteran minimum wage to fill the vacancy. Any player who has re-signed his contract before April 9 is eligible to join the team.
That said, let’s take a look at four players who can assist the Lakers in their quest for the NBA bi-championship.
Otto Porter Jr.
Perhaps this is one of the Lakers’ favorite options. Otto has a score of three in the 40% range this season and fits perfectly into the defensive player and pitcher model that the Lakers are looking for.
If the rebuilding of the Magic causes the player not to be in the team’s plans, Porter is a player to keep an eye on.
Did you know that the best pitcher of the month in March at the Lakers was Wesley Mathews? The player has killed 39.5% of the three-point balls in the last nine games, while Alex Caruso is in complete decay in his pitches and KCP has been hitting one ball less per game since LeBron left due to injury.
Mathews’ arrows are always welcome, but we don’t know if we can count on them for a long time.
Having said that, McLemore adds a dynamic that the Lakers lack: an athletic point guard with great assertiveness. He can defend at least two positions well.
At Houston Rockets, the player hit 40% out of three and averaged 10.1 points in 22.8 minutes in 2019-20 – his only opportunity so far to play a pivotal role in a playoff team.
If the Lakers fail to score, the board may also target an elite defender – especially someone familiar with the system and the players in the locker room. Bradley is respected at the Lakers for his contributions before the bubble last year and would certainly be welcomed back with open arms.
If he manages to move closer to his 36.4% three-point advantage, Bradley can play a crucial role in any playoff series.
Every Rockets veteran is a candidate for acquisition, and the 30-year-old is no exception.
Ellington would instantly become the most accurate sniper on the team. The veteran is hitting 42.6% of his three balls in 2020-21, which would be the Lakers’ best brand by far.
Dan Favale of the Bleacher Report went deeper:
“His 42.4 percent use of three points tells only part of the story. He is killing 45 percent of those balls in the final periods, the league’s third highest mark among 144 players who have tried at least 100 of those three balls.”
Reportedly, the Pistons do not plan to release Ellington. But that can change.
What is your bet? Would you add someone to the list? Tell us!
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