Dennis Schroder has been up and down for the Lakers this year — but he’s been valuable to them.
There are times when he has looked like the playoff Rondo the Lakers were hoping to get when adding him last offseason. There are other times when the shots aren’t falling and he has looked out of place on offense. His on-ball defense has been solid, and he’s averaging 15 points a game, but is shooting just 31.8% from three, and his 54.2 true shooting percentage is below league average. That said, the Laker offense is 6.5 per 100 possessions better when he is on the court this season.
The Lakers like him, but also Schroder was part of the trade package for the Lakers to try and land Kyle Lowry.
Schroder is a free agent this offseason and the Lakers could sign him to a contract extension now, but the sides are not close to a deal report Jovan Buha and Bill Oram of The Athletic.
But sources said the sides remain far apart in extension negotiations, with Schröder, who is making $15.5 million in the final year of a four-year contract, seeking a multi-year extension that would pay him more than $20 million per year. That gap contributed to the Lakers’ willingness to include Schröder in trade talks.
When he was asked about his contract situation last week, Schröder said, “At the end of the day, I want to be a Laker for a long time. … I just want it to be fair.”
The most the Lakers can offer Schroder under the rules of the CBA is a 20% raise from his current contract (and 8% raises in subsequent years). Meaning, the max the Lakers can offer right now is a four-year contract that starts at $18.6 million next season and would be worth $83.3 million over the next four years.
That is the max extension the Lakers can offer, we don’t know if that is what they put on the table — the most logical explanation of the situation is the Lakers have offered less and Schroder wants the full amount. That max extension would essentially be above-average starting point guard money in today’s NBA. It’s also possible the Lakers offered that but Schroder wants more money and thinks he can get it as a free agent.
While there are several teams with cap space to spend this coming offseason, it is hard to imagine Schroder getting an offer much larger than the max the Lakers could put on the table.
The Lakers gave up a first-round pick to get Schroder; they didn’t do that with the intention of letting him walk after one season.
The Lakers run most of their offense through LeBron James (when he’s healthy), and whoever is their point guard needs to be able to play on and off the ball. The Lakers will have other players they can look to bring in this offseason, via trade or free agency, should Schroder leave.