With the Los Angeles Lakers 2021-22 effectively over, the team has looked to feed minutes to the younger players on the roster.
The Lakers have begun to showcase players like Malik Monk and Austin Reaves, and even waived Trevor Ariza in order to clear up a roster spot to get a longer look at Wenyen Gabriel, who was previously on a two-way deal. Gabriel has looked good since signing with Los Angeles and could be a contributor heading into the 2022-23 season.
Because the Lakers signed Gabriel to a standard NBA contract, they were able to free up a two-way spot and according to Shams Charania of The Athletic, it looks like they will be using it on a familiar face in Mac McClung:
The Los Angeles Lakers are planning to sign guard Mac McClung to a two-way NBA contract, sources tell @TheAthletic @Stadium. McClung went to training camp with the Lakers and has developed in their South Bay affiliate where he won G League Rookie of the Year.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) April 9, 2022
McClung first came to the organization as a member of their Summer League team before being invited to training camp on an Exhibit 10 deal. Since then, McClung has been playing with the South Bay Lakers where he had an impressive rookie year, averaging 21.6 points, 7.6 assists, 6.7 rebounds and 1.4 steals in just over 36 minutes a game.
Although there might be some concerns about McClung’s size at the NBA level, he has shown a more well-rounded guard skillset that looks like it would translate well on the parent team. With more than half the roster set to become free agents and a bloated salary cap sheet, L.A. is going to need to find cheap production somewhere and McClung could be someone that fits the bill.
The scouting department has done an excellent job in recent years of unearthing talent, and McClung should be considered another notch in their belt.
Anthony Davis understands players might not return for 2022-23 season
Injuries were yet again a major reason why the Lakers fell short of expectations, though they still could have given themselves a better shot had they played with more effort and energy. Still, Anthony Davis was disappointed with the result and reiterated his desire to see what the team could do if they were healthy.
However, Davis also understands that players may not return for next year, so it will be interesting to see what the roster looks like in the coming months.
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