clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Lakers would give championship rings to all 26 players to play for them if they win title

You get a ring! And you get a ring! And you get a ring! (repeat 23 more times)

Los Angeles Lakers v Sacramento Kings Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images

As their postseason run continues, the Los Angeles Lakers have made a decision that if they do win three more rounds of the NBA playoffs and claim their 18th banner, no players’ contributions will have been too small to celebrate; not even Patrick Beverley. They will all get championship rings.

This is pretty much exactly what we predicted on this site back when Beverley reiterated that both he and Russell Westbrook would want some jewelry if their former team won the title, and TNT sideline reporter Chris Haynes confirmed as much during the network’s pregame broadcast on Monday:

Haynes credits Rob Pelinka with instituting that policy, and it’s something the Lakers did do back in 2020, when they offered rings to both DeMarcus Cousins (who did not play a second for the team following an offseason injury and was cut before the season even shut down to make a roster spot for Markieff Morris) and Avery Bradley (who did not go to the bubble with the Lakers).

But the Lakers would have a bit more jewelry than that to hand out this time around if they do win it all. Because of their seismic roster overhaul at the NBA trade deadline, the team would be on the hook for 26 championship rings just for players alone.

First, they’d need one for the 15 players currently on the roster:

  1. LeBron James
  2. Anthony Davis
  3. D’Angelo Russell
  4. Dennis Schröder
  5. Austin Reaves
  6. Troy Brown Jr.
  7. Jarred Vanderbilt
  8. Malik Beasley
  9. Lonnie Walker IV
  10. Rui Hachimura
  11. Wenyen Gabriel
  12. Max Christie
  13. Mo Bamba
  14. Tristan Thompson
  15. Shaq Harrison

Then there are the team’s pair of two-way players:

  1. Cole Swider
  2. Scotty Pippen Jr.

That’s 17 so far. Then you add in the guys who were traded midseason:

  1. Thomas Bryant
  2. Kendrick Nunn
  3. Juan Toscano-Anderson
  4. Russell Westbrook
  5. Patrick Beverley
  6. Damian Jones

Now we’re up to 23. “Surely that’s it, right?” I can hear you asking, but no, dear reader, how could you forget buzzer-beating hero Matt Ryan and the two other players the Lakers cut (Davon Reed) or let go after a 10-day contract (Sterling Brown) this season.

So if you don’t include the middle schooler’s draft rights that the team traded at the deadline, that’s 26 players in all! Given that when the Lakers won in 2020, their rings were estimated to have cost $20,000 a pop, giving every player that was on the Lakers this season a ring would cost $520,000. That’s about half of a veteran’s minimum contract, for comparison, so by NBA parlance it’s not a huge expenditure.

Still, let’s just say that while this would indeed be a really classy gesture by the team if they do win this year’s title, I won’t be surprised if they aren’t exactly tossing around cash to try and buy a second-round pick on draft night if it comes to pass. The best we can hope for is that they don’t tell Austin Reaves to think of how much exposure he’s getting with that sweet bling and a Laker uniform, and ask him give them a discount out of his next contract as a result.

You can follow Harrison on Twitter at @hmfaigen.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Silver Screen & Roll Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of Los Angeles Lakers news from Silver Screen & Roll