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Report: Rui Hachimura to re-sign with Lakers in free agency

Rui Hachimura thrived with the Lakers after a midseason trade, and so it’s no surprise he’s returning to the team in NBA free agency.

Oklahoma City Thunder v Los Angeles Lakers Photo by Tyler Ross/NBAE via Getty Images

Rui Hachimura isn’t going anywhere. Rather than sign an offer sheet and waste everyone’s time, he’s reportedly signing a deal to return to the Lakers outright in NBA free agency.

Shams Charania of The Athletic reported the news on Hachimura’s new 3-year, $51-million deal:

A breakout postseason performance earned him a big pay raise after struggling in the regular season. Rui was one of the standout performers for the Lakers in the postseason, averaging 12.2 points while shooting 48.7% from the 3-point line on 39 attempts. The postseason started with a career-best performance in Game 1 in Memphis and ended with him starting an elimination game, bookending an overall strong playoff run.

It was a perfectly-timed hot streak for Hachimura as he showed his value alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis in the biggest games of his career. Rui was happy to credit the Lakers coaching staff and veterans for helping prepare him for those moments in which both sides benefitted.

All signs always pointed towards a Rui-turn for Hachimura, with the team leaking from the beginning that they’d match any offer he’d receive after his playoff breakout, and his own comments indicating how much he enjoyed his time with the Lakers and wanted to stay.

Ultimately, there was very little buzz about Hachimura going anywhere else in free agency. A lack of cap space from other teams played a notable role in that, but him finding so much success with the Lakers also was a big factor.

At $17 million AAV, Hachimura comes in at a tick lower than his cap hold but a number that is certainly fair for both sides. Wings like Rui are hard to find, and ones that have had so much success alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis are even more rare.

Hachimura and the Lakers found a fit for one another. Now, the challenge will be building off that strong postseason for Rui and continuing to find success in purple and gold.

For all the latest on NBA free agency, check out our Silver Screen and Roll Lakers free agency rumors tracker.

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