NBA notebook: Lakers eye James as point guard
LeBron James is preparing to take on a new role with the Los Angeles Lakers this season as point guard, according to a report Monday by Yahoo! Sports’ Chris Haynes.
The 34-year-old James will take over floor general duties from Lonzo Ball, who was traded to New Orleans, and Rajon Rondo, who remains one of three other point guards on the Lakers’ roster along with Quinn Cook and Alex Caruso.
While James has started sparingly as a point guard in his career, the job falls within his comfort zone since the 15-time All-Star and four-time NBA MVP has functioned primarily as a point forward for most of his career.
James is starting his 17th season in the league and will be surrounded by several new faces looking to contend for a championship thanks to the addition of All-Star forward Anthony Davis and six-time All-Star center DeMarcus Cousins.
—Russell Westbrook’s 11-year run in Oklahoma City could be coming to a close as the Thunder shift into rebuilding mode.
The latest move from Thunder general manager Sam Presti came as forward Jerami Grant was traded to the Denver Nuggets for a 2020 first-round pick. Moving Grant saves the Thunder $39 million, according to ESPN.
Grant, 25, averaged 13.6 points, 5.2 rebounds and 1.3 blocks in 80 games (77 starts) for the Thunder last season.
—Point guard Avery Bradley will sign a two-year deal with the Lakers after officially clearing waivers, ESPN reported.
Bradley joins a rebuilt roster around LeBron James that features a multitude of newcomers including Anthony Davis, DeMarcus Cousins and Danny Green.
Bradley, 28, was a target of the Lakers in trade talks in 2017 and 2018. He split time last season between the Los Angeles Clippers and Memphis Grizzlies, averaging 16.1 points and 4.0 assists in Memphis.
—Jabari Parker agreed to a two-year, $13 million deal with the Atlanta Hawks.
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Parker, 24, was the No. 2 overall pick in the 2014 draft but will be starting over with his fourth team.
Injuries have limited Parker to 247 career games — he suffered torn anterior cruciate ligaments in 2014 and 2017 — but he holds averages of 15.1 points and 5.7 rebounds per game in the NBA.
—The Clippers will re-sign forward JaMychal Green to a two-year, $10 million deal, The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported.
Green reportedly turned down more lucrative offers elsewhere to return to the Clippers and try to win a championship.
Green, 29, split the 2018-19 season between Los Angeles and the Grizzlies. With the Clippers, he played in 24 games and averaged 8.7 points and 6.5 rebounds in 19.6 minutes.
—The Golden State Warriors acquired forward/center Omari Spellman in a trade with the Hawks and reportedly signed veteran guard Alec Burks.
The Hawks received center Damian Jones and a 2026 second-round draft pick from the Warriors in exchange for Spellman.
Spellman, 21, appeared in 46 games (11 starts) during his 2018-19 rookie season and averaged 5.9 points and 4.2 rebounds. The 24-year-old Jones played in 49 regular season games during three seasons with the Warriors, averaging 3.6 points and 2.3 rebounds.
—The Minnesota Timberwolves claimed point guard Tyrone Wallace off waivers from the Clippers.
Wallace, 25, appeared in 92 games (19 starts) over the past two seasons with the Clippers, averaging 5.5 points, 2.2 rebounds and 1.2 assists in 16.1 minutes.
Wallace also played in 64 games (40 starts) in the G League during the 2016-17 and 2017-18 campaigns, averaging 17.9 points, 4.9 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 1.4 steals per game.
—Field Level Media