Lakers GM’s Summer Moves Doomed Roster

Rob Pelinka made bold moves last summer after the Lakers reached the conference finals, but now those decisions are causing problems.

LA Lakers: Post LeBron James signing

The Lakers are slightly above the $188.9M second apron. — Bobby Marks (@BobbyMarks42) July 3, 2024

The team is over the second tax apron after signing LeBron and Bronny James, plus Max Christie from 2022. How did a team that finished eighth in the Western Conference end up with such a high payroll? It’s because of some questionable player options.

Pelinka gave player options to D’Angelo Russell, Cam Reddish, Jaxson Hayes, and Christian Wood last summer. Three of these players had disappointing seasons in 2023-24. Russell was inconsistent and even went scoreless in Game 3 against the Nuggets during the playoffs .

Now, these contracts are eating up valuable salary space and roster spots. Three out of fifteen roster spots are taken by players they might not have wanted back. Another spot is held by Bronny James, who only averaged 4.8 points in college.

Roster Challenges:

Fans might think this doesn’t look good for next season. The Lakers could try to trade these contracts, but giving Reddish or Hayes a player option was puzzling even back then. Meanwhile, they lost Taurean Prince who played significant minutes despite not being a fan favorite.

Pelinka aimed to go all-in for 2023-24 but ended up leaving the team strapped for cash and roster space for 2024-25.

What do you think about this situation?

James Shotwell
James Shotwell
James, a dedicated writer for BasketballHour, holds a degree in English and Creative Writing. A genuine sports enthusiast and skilled betting advice provider, he writes engaging articles and valuable winning strategies for sports.

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