NBA Free Agency: Lakers Running the Years Back with Four Former Players Returning for Upcoming Season

Published 08/02/2021, 11:30 PM EDT
Jan 27, 2021; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) scores past Philadelphia 76ers center Dwight Howard (39) during the fourth quarter at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports


The Lakers are making up for every weakness they left open in their roster in the 2020-21 season. They now look like an upgraded version of their 2019-20 championship-winning team and it’s just the beginning. 

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With the Russell Westbrook Trade stealing the headlines from NBA Drafts 2021, the Lakers have decided to go all in. Every other day brings news of an acquisition that makes them a better win-now roster. But one thing that strikes the most is them going back to their former players. 

So how do they look on the paper with the recent signings and the others that are awaiting a green signal?

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The Lake Show and their love for their former selves

For one, they have their Mr. Double-Double Dwight Howard coming back as a star center, the position at which they struggled last season. Apart from him, the 36-YO Trevor Ariza, possibly wanting to end his career with the Lakers, has also signed a one-year deal. He comes from those Pau Gasol/Kobe Bryant days and will bring a great experience on the cards. 

Next up is shooting guard Wayne Ellington along with Kent Bazemore to give them that much-needed long-range shooting edge. Apart from these four men, Danny Green to the Lakers is also a major possibility that can take shape in the coming days.

Lakers’ Summer League Roster

Recently, the LA-based organization announced their summer league roster led by names like Joel Ayayi. Both Joel and Austin Reaves turned down their draft options to sign with the Lakers in a mindful move. 

Notably, the Vegas summer league is not the only tournament they’ll play as the Annual Californian Classic is another event on the cards. 

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The active/pending roster for Rob Pelinka’s men

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Both LeBron James and Anthony Davis are on their extensions, taking 43.79% of the salary cap. Center Marc Gasol (currently playing for Team Spain) is on a minimum contract and the 2015 undrafted player Alfonzo McKinnie is another name on the team.

But the greatest name on the list has to be Russell Westbrook who is all set to make his way to LA. The 32-YO point guard will fill the much-needed third place in the roster and help the star duo.

With all that set, LA has a few names that are yet to come to a final agreement. Some of these names are Dennis Schroder, Wesley Matthews, Andre Drummond, Jared Dudley, Markieff Morris, Kostas Antetokounmpo, and Dion Waiters.

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So what do you think, are the men in purple & gold headed in the right direction? Help us know your views in the comments below.

Watch this story – Lakers Legends Who Changed Their Jerseys Multiple Times

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Sourabh Singh

1599 articles

Sourabh Singh is an NBA sports analyst for EssentiallySports, who has been working with the site since May 2020. Prior to this, he functioned as Managing Editor at WittyFeed, followed by a stint at Decathlon. The Sports Management graduate leads an active lifestyle, veering to the mountains for off-trail adventures.

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