Shannon Brown likes Los Angeles a lot, loves playing for the Lakers. Winning is fun, plus there are perks – you don’t have a role in the new Monica video if you’re coming off the bench in Indiana.
But it’s about the money at some point, and New York is offering more — Alex Kennedy of Hoopsworld says the Knicks have offered $4 million a year in a multi-year deal. Newsday’s Alan Hahn says more like $2.5 to $3 million the first year of a deal. The Lakers offers are rumored to be smaller right now.
Brown wants to stay in Los Angeles, even if he is really a poor fit for the triangle. Last season when he was on the floor, especially when he played backup point guard, the Lakers strayed from the offense. Two seasons ago the Lakers bench got out and ran, and Brown was a great fit there, a revelation. Now he would be part of the crowded backup guard rotation in LA.
In New York he would get more minutes, and he would be in an offense that would have him getting the ball in transition a lot more. He could flourish. It has to be tempting, but his heart is still in LA.
The Knicks offers are leverage he can use on the Lakers. Mitch Kupchak is trying to find someone to take Sasha Vujacic’s $5.5 million next year to free up some salary space to sign Brown. The Lakers are way, way over the luxury tax line and every dollar they spend is a dollar in tax, so they are trying to move Vujacic and give some of that money to Brown.
But he’s got a good offer and more minutes waiting in NYC. And at some point he is going to have to jump on that.