The Los Angeles Lakers gear up for a new season, assembling a young core with rookie Brandon Ingram formally signing with the team. Ingram agreed to a four-year contract worth $23.8 million. Rumors are swirling that with Ingram signing, the Lakers are looking at buying out Nick Young before the start of the season.
Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak confirmed the signing of Ingram, though details of the contract were not disclosed per team policy. The Lakers are one of the teams that were busy lately in signing players that form part of their rebuilding process. They have high hopes on Ingram, who has shown his court skills during the Summer League in Las Vegas.
Ingram averaged 12.2 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 1.8 assists in five games that the Lakers played in the said league. With his performance, Ingram participated as a member of the 2016 USA Men’s select team. The Lakers are hoping that Ingram will bring the same kind of intensity when the new season starts.
Signing Ingram together with complete deals with Chinese baller Yi Jianlian, the Lakers are nearly complete with putting up a 15-man roster for opening night. However, the same could not be said of Nick Young, who the Lakers are trying to ship or buyout.
The Lakers looks to sign former Notre Dame standout Zach Auguste and Tarik Black to a deal. If the deals become a success, then Young’s tenure with the Lakers are over. Young still has an $11 million left on his four-year, $21 million contracts with the Lakers. Buying him out will give the Lakers enough cap space that could be useful either during the mid-season trade or free agency next year.
Young failed to bring back the spark he had during his heyday coming off the bench. Aside from that, he had some off-the-court issues with D’Angelo Russell giving the team a bad reputation towards the end of last season. Russell secretly filmed Young confessing on cheating with his then girlfriend Iggy Azalea. The video went viral that led to Azalea breaking up with Young a few months later.
Though Young stated that he wants to mend his ways with Russell, it is still not a guarantee that the Lakers would hold on to him. With the damage done, the Lakers, as an organization, feel that it would be best for them to part ways at this point.
The Lakers are an interesting story this coming season. They are getting their acts together to move on from the Kobe Bryant retirement. With Ingram and its talented young core, the Lakers are hoping to make an impact less, without Young.
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