Spring is upon us and in the NBA landscape that means the playoffs are around the corner.
Even so, teams still have a chance to bolster their rosters as the season wanes. Those that didn’t make moves before the trade deadline have their eyes on buyout players and free agents.
In the west, it seems to be a two-team race between the Clippers and the Lakers. While the Clippers have been making moves since the off-season, the Lakers haven’t. Now, as we enter the stretch run, the Lakers are shaking up the roster as they enter with the best record in the western conference. DeMarcus Cousins was released for Markieff Morris, formerly of the Detroit Pistons.
The Lakers then turned their attention to the guard position, specifically JR Smith and Dion Waiters, who had workouts for the team. After meetings and tryouts, news broke the team will be singing Waiters. He’s the backup guard who can score and create his own shot off the bench.
Waiters played college basketball for Syracuse and was drafted with the fourth overall pick in 2012 by the Cleveland Cavaliers. Waiters, 28, has averaged 13 points, 2.7 rebounds, 3 assists while shooting 35% from three and 41.2% overall in his career.
In addition to his off-the-court issues, Waiters have been plagued by injuries. He hasn’t played more than 46 games since the 2015-16 season. Waiters last saw action with the Miami Heat before being traded and waived by the Memphis Grizzlies.
Every time he built momentum in Miami, a new injury or incident sidelined him. Signing Waiters carries obvious risks and rewards for Los Angeles. However, landing significant difference-makers at this stage of the season is nearly impossible. If Waiters contributes in any way, he can truly help the Lakers in battlefield Los Angeles.