The Lakers continued their reunion tour during the opening hours of the offseason by agreeing to a one-year deal with Kent Bazemore, per Shams Charania of The Athletic.
Bazemore spent half a season in Los Angeles in 2013-14 before leaving in free agency.
Free agent Kent Bazemore has agreed to a 1-year deal with the Lakers, agent Austin Walton tells @TheAthletic @Stadium.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) August 3, 2021
Bazemore is the fourth former Laker to sign with the team this offseason with each of the team’s signings so far being players who have donned the purple and gold previously in their career. Also notable is that Bazemore is another wing joining the roster along with Wayne Ellington and Trevor Ariza. Dwight Howard is the only center the Lakers have signed so far.
Last season in Golden State, Bazemore averaged 7.2 points and 3.4 rebounds per game while shooting 40.8% from the 3-point line, a career-best mark, on 2.7 attempts per game. Bazemore also played in 67 games, starting 18 of them, while averaging 19.9 minutes per game. Per Synergy, on catch-and-shoot opportunities, Bazemore ranked in the 76th percentile after shooting 41% on those attempts.
Memorably, this is not the first time the Lakers have chased Bazemore in free agency. In the infamous summer of 2016, the Lakers offered Bazemore a contract that he turned down to remain in Atlanta. The Lakers front office then turned and offered the same contract to Luol Deng and, as they say, the rest is history.
Lakers bumped up offer for Luol Deng to $18M per--same that they offered Kent Bazemore--after Bazemore turned them down to stay in Atlanta.— David Aldridge (@davidaldridgedc) July 2, 2016
Ironically, this time around, Bazemore accepted less money to join the Lakers. According to multiple reports, Bazemore turned down more money from the Warriors to join the Lakers where he will reportedly have a “major role” with the team.
I'm told Kent Bazemore was offered more money from the Warriors than the Lakers. But Bazemore agreed to join the Lakers on a one-year deal because he views them as a title contender and is told he'll have a major role https://t.co/D5brxLKsbk— Mark Medina (@MarkG_Medina) August 3, 2021
Bazemore turned down more money and years (two) from the Warriors, sources say, but believes he will have a bigger role and opportunity to win a championship with the Lakers. Bazemore is betting on himself. https://t.co/rw1VyXMN9c— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) August 3, 2021
After lacking depth on the wing and trading away Kyle Kuzma this offseason in the deal for Russell Westbrook, the team has clearly placed an early priority on signing wings this offseason. Another veteran coming off an impressive season, Bazemore gives the team more experience, more 3-point shooting and more versatility as they continue to make signings that are helping maximize the Westbrook, LeBron James and Anthony Davis trio.
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