After playing in only 13 out of 23 games played by the Los Angeles Lakers so far this season, the frustration is starting to mount for veteran center Chris Kaman.
Apparently, Kaman is unhappy with his current situation with the Lakers and rightfully so. The one-time All-Star isn’t being used by the coaching staff the way Kaman thought he would be when he signed a one-year deal for $3.2 million in the off-season.
With Kaman clearly frustrated, the backup center said the following via Ramona Shelburne of ESPNLosAngeles.com:
“It’s absolutely not what I was looking for,” Kaman told ESPNLosAngeles.com on Monday morning after the Lakers shootaround in Atlanta. “It’s not really in my control. I just try to keep working hard and be ready if the time comes. And if it doesn’t, then it just wasn’t meant to be.”
Along with starting to express his frustration publicly due to the lack of playing time, Kaman also went as far as to say that he probably wouldn’t have signed with the Lakers had he known his fate on the bench via Shelburne:
“Never did I think I would come here and not play, otherwise I probably wouldn’t have come,” Kaman said. “I had a bunch of other options, but I saw opportunity here.”
Before the season began, Pau Gasol, Jordan Hill and Kaman were expected to be the go-to guys in the frontcourt for the Lakers. Gasol was slated to be the starting center while the starting power forward position seemed to be up for grabs for Hill and Kaman.
Much like last season, head coach Mike D’Antoni tried many different combinations in the starting lineup and surprisingly went with Shawne Williams as a stretch four rather than starting Kaman or Hill. Eventually, Williams played his way out of the starting lineup and D’Antoni continued to experiment, but now Kaman seems to be buried on the bench, much like Antawn Jamison was last year.
With all the trade rumors starting to swirl, Kaman may very well be sent packing in a trade at some point between now and the NBA trade deadline on February 20. Although Gasol is getting mentioned in trade scenarios, Kaman may begin to emerge as trade bait with the veteran center publicly expressing his frustration with the team.
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