Lakers and Clippers make first splashes in free agency
According to the Los Angeles Times, the Lakers have signed Vladimir Radmanovic to a 5yr deal for the full mid-level exception (approximately $31mil. for the full contract). The Clippers attempted to re-sign him for the same amount, but when he defected across the
The Radmanovic signing is a solid signing for the Lakers. He'll give them a legitimate 3-point threat and fill an Horry-like role, as big man off the bench who can shoot. At times, if the Lakers want to go really big, they can play Mihm/Brown, Odom and Vlad and have a frontcourt of 3 guys 6'10" and taller. With this signing, all the Lakers have left at their disposal is the lower-level exception, which I expect them to try and use on a guard or save for next off-season.
I'm not sure what's happened with the Clippers, but Elgin Baylor seems to have finally understood how to run a team. Perhaps he always knew, but Donald Sterling was always pinching pennies. I think he enjoyed the TV exposure and all the perks that came with winning and "The (LA) Donald" has decided to keep the Clips competitive. Cassell's play and enthusiasm will easily be worth the $13mil over the next two years and then, if the Clippers continue to do the right thing, he should retire and immediately join the Clippers front-office. I also really like the Thomas move. Thomas can do everything Radmanovic can do offensively plus has a greater defensive impact. If Thomas can play hard as he did in
In other free agent news, Jason Terry re-upped with the Mavs for 6yrs/$50mil. That's a nice signing for
The big player changing teams thus far is Peja Stojakovic who signed a 5yr/$64mil. dollar contract with