The Lakers like Julius Randle, but what they want more in building a team around LeBron James is flexibility — Los Angeles only wanted to sign him to a one-year contract. After his breakout year — 16 points and eight rebounds a game, using his strength to bully people inside — Randle rightfully wanted more.
The Lakers renounced their rights to Randle earlier on Monday (clearing the way for L.A. to sign Rajon Rondo).
The New Orleans Pelicans jumped in and grabbed Randle, a story broken by Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.
That sum is the mid-level exception, which the Pelicans have to offer.
What does it mean for the future of DeMarcus Cousins? That is more wide open.