Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Bass has decided to decline his 2016-17 player option worth $3.13 million, exercising his right to enter free agency this summer.
Bass could decide to re-sign with the Lakers on a fresh contract. However, it’s also likely that the versatile forward joins a contender on a veteran minimum deal. The news was first reported by Chris Haynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
Lakers stint ends?
The 30-year-old signed with Los Angeles last offseason with hopes of a prominent role on a young team. However, Bass was asked to play second-fiddle to promising youngsters Julius Randle and Larry Nance Jr. for most of the season.
Even though coach Byron Scott played Bass as a Center in various small-ball units, Bass averaged only 20.3 minutes per game from 66 games which saw him average 7.2 points, 4.3 rebounds and 1.1 assists. Bass’ minutes were significantly down from his four presiding seasons with Boston where he averaged starter’s minutes through most of his stint.
Bass, the former LSU standout, has played for five different teams in his 10-year career in the NBA. After a few seasons with New Orleans, Bass played a few seasons with Dallas and Orlando before finding a more permanent home in Boston – where he spent four solid seasons. During his first year in Boston (2011-12), Bass averaged a career-high 12.5 points and 6.2 rebounds from 31.7 minutes.
Brandon Bass: NBA Journeyman…
Even though Bass doesn’t lend star value, the veteran does “all the little things” that coaches appreciate, be it on the offensive or defensive end. Also, he’s a career 83% free throw shooter and a highly underrated passer, making him versatile enough to play at least three positions on the court.
Should the Lakers bring back Brandon Bass? With his contract coming off the books, the Lakers have just $23.12 million in committed salaries for 2016-17. They will essentially have close to $70 million to spend in free agency. It wouldn’t be a bad option to sign Bass to a two-year $12 million contract.
Lakers F Brandon Bass to decline 2016-17 player option, become unrestricted free agent this summer, league source informs @clevelanddotcom.
— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) April 20, 2016