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Lakers reportedly sign Cole Swider to two-way deal, start to fill Summer League roster

Following the conclusion of the 2022 NBA Draft, the Lakers started to tap the undrafted market in pursuit of filling their pair of two-way spots, as well as their Summer League roster.

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NCAA Basketball: Georgia Tech at Syracuse Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

The 2022 NBA Draft is over, and after acquiring an early second-round pick earlier in the day from the Orlando Magic, the Los Angeles Lakers used that pick to select Michigan State’s Max Christie.

After that, the Lakers — along with all of the other teams in the Association — promptly got to work on signing undrafted free agents. Remember, Austin Reaves was found via the same pool of players after last year’s draft.

In doing so, the Lakers filled the couple of two-way spots they have available to them, reportedly signing Scotty Pippen Jr. (the son of the NBA legend) as well as Syracuse’s Cole Swider (per The Athletic’s Shams Charania).

Earlier, Kyle Goon of The OC Register reported that Swider was “a standout” to multiple people who watched his workout for the Lakers earlier in the week.

Swider is a sharpshooter, averaging 13.9 points per game in his final season with Syracuse, including some truly scorching 47.3% 3-point shooting on 5.1 attempts per game.

Just as they changed before the 2021-22 regular season kicked off, the two-way spots could evolve during and after Summer League play. Last season, Joel Ayayi filled one of these spots along with Austin Reaves before the former of those two was taken out of the spot while the latter was, obviously, promoted to the main roster. At this current juncture, Christie would be a part of the Lakers’ main roster as part of their pair of two-way spots beyond the 15-man limit. That could change, however, depending on the way free agency and summer league shakes out for the team.

There were other reported signings that the Lakers made in their pursuit of filling out their Summer League roster for their first game in the California Classic on Saturday, July 2. The most noteworthy was another NBA legend’s son in Shareef O’Neal, who will be donning the same colors his dad wore during the peak of his career.

The Lakers also may have executed their first training camp invite, as KRPC Houston’s Ari Alexander reports that Houston’s Fabian White Jr. will be signing an Exhibit 10 deal with the team. White worked out for the Lakers in the middle of the month.

As a 6’8 forward, he will be someone to look out for as Summer League rolls on. White averaged a career-high 12.5 points per game in his fifth season with Houston, also tallying 5.7 rebounds and 1.4 blocks per game. He started every game in that final season as his team made a run to the Elite 8 in the 2022 NCAA Tournament.

It was also reported by JD Shaw of Hoops Rumors and Adam Zagoria that UConn guard RJ Cole will also be joining the Lakers’ Summer League team. Cole worked out for the Lakers early in June.

Cole came into the draft as a senior, measuring 6’1 as a point guard. He averaged 15.8 points and 4.1 assists in his senior season. His 3-point shot faltered in his final season as a Huskie, as he only made 33.9% of his 5.3 3-point attempts per game, however, he was a 37.7% shooter in his three preceding seasons (with the first two at Howard University before he transferred).

On Friday afternoon, another player was added to the Summer League roster in Vitto Brown, who played in Spain last season, according to Michael Scotto of HoopsHype.

Brown actually played for Real Betis in Spain last season, not Seville, and averaged 11 points and 4.3 rebounds per game in 23.5 minutes, shooting 38.3% from the 3-point line and 54% from the field. He played in the G League in 2019-20, averaging 15.3 points on 46.5% shooting overall and 38.2% shooting from the field in 42 games for the Erie Bayhawks.

Javante McCoy will also be playing for the Lakers Summer League team after signing an Exhibit 10 contract.

McCoy played five seasons for Boston University, averaging 17.4 points per game last year. He played 147 games in college and was a career 37.7% 3-point shooter but did hit 42.5% of his looks last season. McCoy worked out for the Lakers during the predraft process, doing so on Monday of draft week.

With Christie as well, that brings the current tally of the Lakers’ Summer League team to eight, with a possibility of seven if Austin Reaves were to return to the exhibition. That won’t be the end of the Lakers’ signings, but given the fact that these were made so quickly at the tail-end of draft night, these names are probably the most important to watch out for as potential guys to sneak onto the Lakers’ main roster.

For more Lakers talk, subscribe to the Silver Screen and Roll podcast feed on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Google Podcasts. You can follow Donny on Twitter at @donny_mchenry.

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