Lance Stephenson finally found a team taking a chance on him though his NBA stint for the coming season is still not guaranteed. He needs to make it through training camp to make it to the final lineup, hinting rough weeks ahead.
The New Orleans Pelicans decided to give Stephenson a chance but will need to make internal adjustments to accommodate him. They have a lot of guaranteed contracts on their end, meaning the only way to get Stephenson in is to waive the ones on the roster.
What are Stephenson’s chances?
Stephenson ended the 2015-16 NBA season well, showing off some signs of life. It was a far cry from his stint with the Los Angeles Clippers though the Grizzlies were beset by a lot of injuries.
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With that said, the Grizzlies gave Stephenson a lot of time on the floor and somehow he delivered. The problem is that his efforts were not enough to secure a contract. Apparently the $9.5 million deal was a bit too much for the team to bankroll.
News about the Pelicans agreeing to a deal are therefore half-baked in a sense. Stephenson needs to prove his worth before Alvin Gentry and company decide to tweak the lineup before the actual regular season kicks off in late October.
Last Chance a Redemption
For his part, Stephenson needs to prove he is worth the trouble. His attitude and inability to hit it off well with his teammates is a fact so it will be interesting how he can get along with Anthony Davis and company.
Stephenson is unlikely to transform overnight though Gentry could guide him along the way. But like Doc Rivers, Gentry has his limits and hopefully Stephenson does not run it out.
Stephenson may want to recall the old form he had with the Pacers and work on his social relationship with co-players and coaches. If he continues to be as arrogant, he may just find himself back in the free agent market once again.