With reports that the Los Angeles Lakers plan on going into the season with 14 players under contract, the team still has one open spot after the return of point guard Rajon Rondo. There are plenty of options for that spot, but one name that has been mentioned multiple times is center DeAndre Jordan.
Jordan would undoubtedly fit the trend of the majority of Lakers signings this offseason, being a veteran who is no longer at the peak of his powers but still can bring plenty to a team.
As expected, the Nets moved on from Jordan by trading him to the Detroit Pistons. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, the Pistons will work on buying him out, resulting in him becoming a free agent, with the Lakers in the lead to sign him.
Again, Pistons plan is to negotiate a contract buyout with the DeAndre Jordan and allow him to become a free agent, sources tell ESPN. In that scenario, the Lakers will be a serious contender, sources tell ESPN. https://t.co/WjbY2ch41h
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) September 3, 2021
Jordan gives the Lakers another true center to deploy against some of the league’s premier big men. While not the Defensive Player of the Year candidate he was in years past, Jordan remains a solid rebounder and rim protector who can finish easy dunks down low, which he is sure to receive when playing with LeBron James and Russell Westbrook. Basketball betting odds are not likely to move much with this as the Lakers are already heavy favorites in the Western Conference.
The question now is what this means for big man Marc Gasol. Carrying three centers along with Anthony Davis, who will slide to the position in crunch time most nights, wouldn’t seem to make much sense. Gasol provides a different skillset than Jordan, and Dwight Howard is also returning to the team this season, being a better shooter and playmaker, but not the rebounder and finisher those two are.
The Lakers are obviously in win-now mode, and Jordan showed last season that he can still produce in small doses. Nevertheless, the franchise believes that they have the formula to bring another championship to Staples Center, and soon everyone will see whether or not that’s the case.
Last season with the Nets, Jordan averaged 7.5 points and 7.5 rebounds on 76.3% shooting in 57 games.
Dwight Howard looking forward to teaming with greats on Lakers
There is no doubt that Jordan falls in line with the other former All-Stars on the Lakers roster, and his new teammate Dwight Howard has already made his excitement clear about being on the floor with his new teammates.
“It will be crazy,” Howard said. “It’s something that’s really hard to fathom, just imagine seeing all of us on the floor at the same time. Not on the All-Star team, not on the Olympic team, not for a charity game, but for an actual season, all of us will be together. So I think that’s gonna be great. All our guys are hungry, we want to win, we want to stay in the best shape as possible, so I think it’s gonna be an awesome time this year just having everybody on the floor practicing, going hard, understanding that it’s only one mission and that’s to win the championship.”