Lakers Report: Team Previously Had Interest in Reunion With Another Big
Earlier this summer, the Lakers were considering bringing back another big who could consistently catch lobs and block shots.
Per NBA insider Marc Stein,
League sources say that the Lakers had strong interest earlier in the summer in trying to reacquire Damian Jones, but Sacramento elected to retain Jones and make his contract guaranteed for the coming season even though the Kings already have Richaun Holmes, Tristan Thompson, Alex Len and (yes, still) Marvin Bagley III.
Last season, Jones played on several 10-day contracts with the Phoenix Suns, Lakers, and Sacramento Kings. He finished out the year with the Kings, and they recently decided to guarantee his contract for the upcoming season.
When the Lakers were down multiple bigs late in February and March, Jones played in eight games for the team averaging 14 minutes.
Although a minuscule sample size, the one stat that stands out is how he converted 16 of his 17 shot attempts while playing with the Lakers. Much of his role was to finish plays around the rim. Per Basketball Reference, the average distance of his shot attempts were 1.8 feet.
Once the Kings decided to guarantee his contract, the Lakers moved ahead and signed DeAndre Jordan yesterday. With the increasing likelihood Marc Gasol will not return with the team, the Lakers needed insurance at the five, and currently have Dwight Howard and Jordan as back up bigs.
Even though the Lakers were not able to get Jones, it is observant to see the type of centers the front office is going after. After a change of pace big like Gasol—who spread the floor and allowed James and Dennis Schroder to penetrate the paint to generate offense—it looks like the team is going back to the traditional bigs to pair with James. (ie. JaVale McGee, Howard, Montrezl Harrell).