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NBA

Los Angeles Lakers sign Washington Wizards center Thomas Bryant to one year deal

The franchise will be hoping that the player they once waived, can return ‘home’ to help build something better than what was.

Update:
Los Angeles Lakers sign Washington Wizards center Thomas Bryant to 1-year deal
Greg FiumeAFP

Though everyone is likely focused on the possibility of a Kyrie Irving for Russell Westbrook trade, the Lakers are quietly going about their roster repairs.

Lakers new boy Thomas Bryant can definitely shoot

According to reports, the Los Angeles Lakers have signed Washington Wizards center Thomas Bryant to a one-year contract. Incidentally, Bryant will actually have the opportunity to secure a spot as a starter, as it’s widely expected that Anthony Davis will be used as a power forward. With that in mind, his only real competition for the spot will be in the form of Damian Jones who the Lakers brought in from the Sacramento Kings.

What’s interesting here is that it’s actually the second time that both players will be playing for the Lakers. Jones had a short stint with in Los Angeles during the 2020-21 season, but was soon out the door and off to the Kings after his 10-day contracts expired. Bryant on the other hand was a second-round pick of the Lakers back in 2017, but was waived after his rookie year. He would go on to improve significantly in Washington, where he averaged 11.6 points per game on 60% shooting and 37% from beyond the arc in his first 118 games for the franchise. As one of the more efficient big men in the league, the Lakers are assuredly interested in his prowess from long distance. Bryant made over 40% of his attempts from deep during the 2019-20 season.

Is there any catch with Thomas Bryant?

If there is any risk involved in this deal, it’s that Bryant tore his ACL during the 2020-21 season and to be perfectly honest, has not looked the same since. With just 27 games to his name in this past season, he struggled to earn regular minutes and was often overlooked in favor of Montrezl Harrell, Daniel Gafford and later Kristaps Porzingis. With that said, Bryant can now look forward to more time for recovery as well as the notion that he will be on a roster that has Hall of Fame talent. With the Lakers now known to be working on a trade deal involving Kyrie Irving and Russell Westbrook, it’s worth pointing out that Bryant actually played with Westbrook during the 2020-21 season. That’s to say that having a big man who can shoot, will be a plus regardless of who lines up at point guard.