Along with superstar center Dwight Howard, Antawn Jamison will not be returning to the Los Angeles Lakers next season. Jamison signed a one-year deal with the Lakers in an effort to win an NBA title before calling it a career. Jamison’s title aspirations did not not go according to plan.
With Jamison currently gauging interest in his services around the league, the veteran forward reflected on an extremely disappointing season with the Lakers and all the nonsense that transpired in Los Angeles via DeAntae Prince of Sporting News:
“It was fun,” Jamison said. “There was just a lot of unnecessary nonsense that really prevented us from accomplishing what we could have accomplished. Of course you can’t do anything with injuries and the coaches being fired…”
With everything that went wrong with this team built to win a championship last season, Jamison’s gamble to take the veteran’s minimum rather than signing a much more lucrative deal with a team like the Charlotte Bobcats didn’t pay off. The Lakers were considered a top tier team in the Western Conference with the addition of Steve Nash and Dwight, but couldn’t stay healthy or create any team chemistry until late in the season.
Jamison was clearly disappointed with his role and all the off-the-court drama that took place in Los Angeles. The former Sixth Man of the Year says he’ll be making more of an effort to weigh his options in free agency this time around rather than jumping at another ideal opportunity on paper like he did last year, via Prince:
“Didn’t really view my options, but this year I really want to make sure I’m going to the right situation, where I have a good rapport with the coaching staff and also with management I’m able to communicate and get an understanding of what they want from me.”
Obviously, Jamison wasn’t given a clear indication from the Lakers’ coaching staff as to what the team wanted or expected of him off the bench. Although Jamison clearly wasn’t happy with his role, the North Carolina product was arguably the best bench player for the Lakers last season. A case could be made for Earl Clark, but Jamison proved to be the most consistent.
As of right now, Jamison has received interest from the Bobcats, Chicago Bulls, Los Angeles Clippers and Memphis Grizzlies. Charlotte may emerge as the frontrunner if Jamison is still intent on heading home.
After reading his comments post-Lakers, check out what Antawn Jamison had to say at his Lakers introductory press conference, before the “nonsense”: