The Los Angeles Lakers announced that the team has waived second-year center Thomas Bryant. Bryant was selected with the No. 42 pick in 2017 and appeared in 15 games for the Lakers.
Bryant didn’t see much playing time with the Lakers, but he was a force in the G League with the South Bay Lakers, averaging 19.7 points per game on an incredible 36.4 percent shooting from 3-point range. Bryant also contributed 7.4 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 1.5 blocks per game.
As a result, the 20-year-old was named to the All-NBA G League First Team as well as the G League All-Rookie First Team. He will now enter unrestricted free agency if he clears waivers.
The Lakers had until July 5 to waive Bryant, so it’s worth questioning why they decided to waive Bryant and his $1.37 million non-guaranteed salary on Saturday, especially when earlier in the day, it leaked that they would let Ivica Zubac’s contract become guaranteed for the the 2018-19 season.
While one of them was expected to be waived after the Lakers used their lone first-round pick to draft big man Moritz Wagner in the past draft, hardly anyone expected it to be Bryant, who flashed potential as a stretch five in his rookie season. Meanwhile, Zubac struggled to rediscover his rookie season form.
Unless a trade is in the works, this move is a little hard to understand, but hopefully some clarity on the situation will be provided sooner rather than later.
You can follow Christian on Twitter @RadRivas.