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Joe Smith now a Laker?

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Word on the street from very reliable sources (Adrian Wojnarowski, confirmed by Chris Mannix) is that the Lakers have shipped out fan un-favorite Sasha Vujacic in a three team deal, with Joe Smith coming back in return.  Houston and New Jersey are the other teams involved, with New Jersey picking up The Machine and two 1st round draft picks, and Houston acquiring Terrence Williams

Two things:

  • Unless there are details not yet known, this is a win-win for the Lakers.  Smith is paid about $4 million less than Vujacic, so it puts a little money back in Dr. Buss' pockets and spreads the depth of the roster a little more evenly (if we discount the presence of Theo Ratliff).  The Lakers now have only 4 guards on the roster, but they have four small forwards, three of whom can cover the SG position on defense (which is where you worry more about players playing out of position).
  • It's not a great day to be Derrick Caracter.  Don't get me wrong, the kid is still blessed to have a guaranteed contract as a member of the defending champs, and his future is still as bright as one can reasonably expect from the 58th overall selection, but dude just went from 3rd on the depth chart to 5th in 24 hours.  The addition of Smith also indicates that the Lakers have little hope of contribution from Theo Ratliff.