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Thursday, December 2, 2021

Lakers add Avery Bradley, bolstering defensive depth

EL SEGUNDO – Avery Bradley started one of the title quests but was unable to reap the benefits.

Now he has a second chance.

The Lakers banned the 30-year-old defender from waivers on Monday afternoon, filling their 15th place with a guard once seen as a tonic in Frank Vogel’s defense scheme. Bradley was cut earlier this preseason by the Golden State Warriors and immediately gives the Lakers depth in positions where they have seen injuries before. ESPN said Bradley’s deal is not guaranteed.

Bradley made 49 appearances for the Lakers in the 2019-2020 season, starting primarily as a defender on the opposite handler and completing assignments throughout the court. During one stretch when he was injured, the Lakers created the Avery Challenge to whip up their defenses and remain one of the best units in the NBA, naming the man Vogel believed to be the creator of their defensive spirit.

But Bradley missed the NBA bubble, forced to make a decision because of one of his children’s health problems. And as the Lakers splashed with champagne and lifted Larry O’Brien’s trophy, Bradley watched from afar – technically a member of the squad, but without playing a minute of the postseason.

Bradley has since been unlucky: he was replaced mid-season by the Miami Heat with the rebuilding Houston Rockets. He averaged just 6.4 points last season and scored less than 33% from three points at his two stops. He and the Lakers had some mutual interest in the offseason, but the squad was quickly replenished with security in the summer.

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With the likely Malik Monk, the controversial Kendrick Nunn and Wayne Ellington’s early-season entry against Golden State, the Lakers already have some uncertainty about defensive rotation. Talen Horton-Tucker’s long-term trauma exacerbates the tension. The Lakers also struggled to implement their preseason defense scheme, which Vogel called a learning curve.

Bradley’s smallest deal counts towards the Lakers coffers by three times due to the luxury tax. General manager Rob Pelinka said the team is likely to take advantage of the spot to stay flexible in the event of injury.

Also on Monday, the Lakers announced that they are using their latest slot in a bilateral contract to sign Jay Huff, a 7ft 1 University of Virginia center who averaged 13 points, 7.1 rebounds and threw over 38% of 3 NS. point range as senior. He was a member of the 2019 Cavaliers’ NCAA Championship team. Along with fellow double-sided player Sekou Dumbuya, the Lakers now have 17 players.

World Nation News Deskhttps://www.worldnationnews.com
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