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The Lakers will reportedly sign Wesley Matthews

The Lakers were linked to Wesley Matthews before free agency even began, and now they will add the wing defender to improve their depth.

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Graphic via Kendrew Abueg / Silver Screen and Roll

The Los Angeles Lakers have added to their wing depth, agreeing to terms on a deal with former Milwaukee Bucks veteran (and their oft-speculated free agency target) Wesley Matthews, according to multiple reports:

It sounds like part of the lure for Matthews may have been the opportunity to start:

This deal for Matthews is for more than the veteran’s minimum, which instantly panicked some Lakers fans who were concerned that it would hard cap the team, and it appears it may do so, if it’s actually the bi-annual exception it is being reported to be by multiple insiders:

However, that doesn’t mean the Lakers can’t make some moves to make this less harmful to their chances of retaining their own free agents or using the full mid-level:

Away from the cap sheet and on the court, Matthews instantly gives the Lakers some of the wing defense they lost by sending Danny Green out in their deal for Dennis Schröder, giving them another option to throw at opposing scorers as they look to defend their title. The team will still obviously be looking to retain Kentavious Caldwell-Pope in free agency, but for now, they are at least guaranteed to go into the season with one other capable wing defender aside from the willing-but-flawed Kyle Kuzma.

He’s also decent at the types of threes he’ll be getting in Los Angeles:

There is no such thing as a perfect signing on a one-year deal, because such players are usually available because they have flaws, but when perusing the available wings in free agency and considering price, this was probably as well as the Lakers could have reasonably done. Especially less than an hour into free agency.

Ultimately only time will tell if this was too much or too soon to lock in an agreement from Matthews, but considering how pressing of a need his skillset was for the Lakers, it was probably smarter to not wait things out too long.

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