The Lakers signed Ryan Kelly, the team announced on Friday via official release.
Kelly was selected with the 48th overall pick in the second round of this summer’s draft, with the hope that the 6’11” forward out of Duke would be able to fill the ever-elusive stretch-four role that seems to thrive in the offensive system favored by Mike D’Antoni.
Kelly shot 42.2 percent from three-point distance in his senior season.
It’s late in the game for a team to be signing its draft picks, but with Kelly, there have been extenuating circumstances.
Kelly underwent multiple procedures this summer to deal with foot issues, and has been slow to recover. It kept him off of the team’s Summer League roster, where guys like Marcus Landry and Elias Harris were able to shine. And he’s still not expected to be ready by the time training camp opens on September 28.
The Lakers drafted Kelly for a reason, however, which explains his eventual signing. The team has apparently decided to wait for him to be healthy enough to show whether or not he can do what they envisioned, and considering his contract is for just one year and is non-guaranteed, he has some incentive to get back on the court and prove his worth as soon as possible.