The Los Angeles Lakers have registered their interest in unrestricted free agent forward and former Laker Trevor Ariza, reports Dave McMenamin of ESPN. Ariza had one of the best seasons of his career in the final year of his contract with the Washington Wizards.
Ariza boosted his stock through the playoffs once again, shooting a blistering 44 percent from beyond the arc while playing his usual disruptive defense. He looked like a much-improved three-point shooter last season as a whole and notched in his first 40 percent shooting season from beyond the arc.
Several teams are expected to court Ariza, as he could be a mid-tier signing that helps fill out a contending roster. Ariza finished the final year of the five-year contract he signed following his folk-hero run with the Lakers that led to the 2009 NBA championship. Ariza was instrumental for the Lakers through the playoffs but ultimately signed with the Houston Rockets.
Ariza could be a huge help at small forward for the Lakers if he can retain his boosted shooting percentages. He'd immediately be the best perimeter defender on the team as well.
Several teams are in the running for Ariza, and the Lakers are in the early phases of exploring their free agency options.