NBA free agency began Friday night, but so far the Los Angeles Lakers have been quiet, as president of basketball operations Magic Johnson and general manager Rob Pelinka have emphasized that the organization will not be big players in free agency until next summer, when they will be able to give out two max contracts.
The Lakers still have some needs to address through free agency this summer though, as they will look to add a backup point guard and a shooter, preferably on a one-year contract.
One player who fits both of those needs is Tyler Ennis, who was traded to the Lakers from the Houston Rockets at the trade deadline this past season.
Ennis played well in limited minutes with the Lakers, and it appears they may have some interest in bringing him back.
According to Mark Medina of the Southern California News Group, the Lakers were among the teams to contact Ennis when free agency began:
The Lakers were among the teams that expressed interest in the 22-year-old Ennis after free agency began on Friday night, according to a league source familiar with the situation. It’s not currently clear which of the other NBA teams also reached out. Discussions were considered preliminary, the source added.
Ennis has bounced around the league a bit after being drafted 18th overall by the Phoenix Suns in 2014 out of Syracuse. He’s played for the Suns, Milwaukee Bucks and Rockets, but may have found a home in Los Angeles.
In 22 games with the Lakers, the 22-year-old averaged a career-high 7.7 points to go along with 2.4 assists in 17.8 minutes per game. He shot 38.9 percent from three-point range, which is a need for a Los Angeles team that lost their best two shooters, Nick Young and D’Angelo Russell.
Johnson and Pelinka have been very patient this year, compared to last summer when Jim Buss and Mitch Kupchak signed Timofey Mozgov and Luol Deng to big contracts early on in free agency. The Lakers brass will make a signing at some point though, and Ennis could be the point guard they go with.