What does Los Angeles have planned for its final roster spots?
ESPN Los Angeles:
Do you want to see the Lakers fill out the roster with Rajon Rondo if he's bought out? How about DeAndre Jordan? 👀
— ESPN Los Angeles (@ESPNLosAngeles) August 26, 2021
Ramona Shelburne of ESPN:
Of all the buyout candidates you’ve mentioned, Rondo is probably the strongest candidate to end up back with the Lakers. If he gets bought out, he goes right back to the Lakers.
Another buyout candidate who I think you should watch for – and this is another one that’s a bit harder to see how it’s going to happen, OK? But DeAndre Jordan in Brooklyn – they are way over the luxury tax. I don’t think he would do a buyout there. I think, if he doesn’t play at all or depending how he fits there, this would be more of a midseason thing, probably.
From what I’ve been hearing, I would be surprised if Jordan is a Net by the time the team heads to San Diego for training camp. He’s already been shopped throughout the draft and offseason and you can start to read the writing on the wall. Now, assuming he’s gone, I’m curious about the exit route. Is it a trade, when there has already been a lack of a market for him and the Nets lack draft capital and young talent to part with for a significant return? Buyout? Waived? Regardless, I do not expect him back.
Though Rondo played excellently in the Lakers’ 2020 championship, he should carry lower expectations at age 35. He was awful with the Hawks last season, and he didn’t revert to Playoff Rondo with the Clippers.
Still, the Lakers could use another point guard behind Russell Westbrook and Kendrick Nunn. Rondo would complement score-first Nunn as more of a distributor. If he’s willing to accept a lesser role, Rondo could help as a deep-roster addition.
Likewise, Jordan could provide depth at center behind Anthony Davis, Dwight Howard and Marc Gasol (maybe Marc Gasol). But he’s also showing signs of decline at age 33. Blake Griffin, Jeff Green and Nicolas Claxton passed him in the Nets’ rotation last season. James Johnson is set to replace Green this year, and Brooklyn also drafted Day'Ron Sharpe No. 29.
Perhaps, the Nets will salary-dump Jordan in a trade. At that point, it’d be easy to see him accepting a buyout from another team he has no connection to.
Like Rondo with the Grizzlies.