The Los Angeles Lakers will try to pry Harrison Barnes away from the Golden State Warriors in the forthcoming off-season, per latest Lakers Rumors.
Barnes, a restricted free agent, will receive a host of max offers from interested suitors. While the Warriors were previously expected to match all offer sheets and retain the small forward, there is fresh speculation that the NBA champions won’t pull all the stops to keep Barnes in Oakland.
Earlier this week, CSNBayArea.com’s Monte Poole revealed that Barnes’ stock has considerably fallen owing to his poor performance over the last few months. “Barnes reportedly rejected a lucrative contract extension, $64 million over four years, and becomes a restricted free agent in July. The Warriors have a decision to make, and Barnes knows it. At this rate, his stock is falling.”
In his last 5 games, Barnes is averaging a mediocre 5 points and 5.2 rebounds. At the start of the season, the North Carolina product was expected to become the third scoring wheel in the Warriors offense and put up stronger numbers. “Barnes is, put simply, jeopardizing his future,” writes Pool.
Time to look for greener pastures?
Clearly, Barnes isn’t getting enough opportunities to exhibit his full repertoire of skills. After all, he is playing in an offense that is dominated by Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green. Is it time for Barnes to look elsewhere? The Lakers, among other teams, are expected to throw a max offer sheet at Barnes on July 1. The question: Is Barnes really worth a max deal?
Lakers and Barnes could prove to be a good match. The Purple & Gold are desperate for help at the wing, so they need a good 3-and-D option, a void that can be filled by Barnes. Also, unlike in Golden State, Barnes will get over 35 minutes of playing time and perhaps bump those season averages closer to the 17 points per game mark.
With close to $68 million to spend in the off-season, the Lakers could look at Barnes as Plan B if they fail to lure Kevin Durant. Regardless of Durant’s future, Barnes would be a great addition to Lakers.
Should the Lakers throw a max offer sheet at Harrison Barnes? Stay tuned for latest Lakers Rumors.