When the Los Angeles Lakers officially waived Mo Bamba on Thursday — while, seemingly, still waiting to see if a trade materializes for Malik Beasley — the team also announced that they were cutting Shaquille Harrison.
Harrison was on a nonguaranteed contract for $2.4 million, which the Lakers will not have to pay or have count against their cap sheet by cutting the 29-year-old guard today:
The Lakers announced they have waived Mo Bamba and Shaq Harrison. pic.twitter.com/nPwOhAmu15— Jovan Buha (@jovanbuha) June 29, 2023
Harrison was signed on the final day of the regular season to a two-year, non-guaranteed deal to serve as a potential emergency playoff reinforcement if injuries struck the Lakers. After he played just 28 total minutes in the postseason, him being included as salary ballast in a trade or being cut seemed like a bit of a formality.
Waiving Harrison now essentially only opens up an emergency, end-of-bench roster spot — and gives the team some more wiggle room if they ultimately hard cap themselves — and it will be interesting to see how the Lakers use it over the weeks to come.
So with Harrison cut (and not counting Malik Beasley, who will likely be cut by the end of the day or traded), the Lakers only have four players under contract heading into NBA free agency on Friday:
- LeBron James
- Anthony Davis
- Jarred Vanderbilt (who will have his contract for next season guaranteed)
- Max Christie
The Lakers also drafted two rookies — Jalen Hood-Schifino and Maxwell Lewis — who have not been officially signed yet (most rookies aren’t signed until closer to summer league to maximize cap space and/or preserve trade eligibility), but suffice to say the front office still has quite a bit of work to do to fill out this roster, even if they mostly run things back with the core of their playoff run.
For all the latest on NBA free agency, check out our Silver Screen and Roll Lakers free agency rumors tracker. You can follow Harrison on Twitter at @hmfaigen.