News has come out amid the big moves made by the Los Angeles Lakers that guard Alex Caruso was more than willing to re-sign with the Lakers for less than what was offered by the Bulls, but the team declined to even offer Caruso that.
Caruso had turned into being solely a big meme and joke on social media but turned himself into quite a valuable player on the roster. He had become an x-factor for the Lakers and even earned some votes for the All-Defensive team this past season.
The Bulls signed Caruso to a four-year, $37 million deal despite Caruso being willing to sign with the team for $30 million.
Wait it gets worse. On Wednesday’s episode of the “Brian Windhorst & The Hoop Collective” podcast, Ramona Shelburne had more details on how little the Lakers valued Caruso in free agency and a big reason for not resigning him was they thought he was worth less than his market value.
“I think the Lakers looked at Alex Caruso and said ‘we’re happy for you, we really appreciate everything you’ve done, we wish we could keep you, but, you know’… He was willing to go back there at three years and $30 million Brian, he actually gave them that option, even at the end — it’s less than what he signed for in Chicago — but even that was more than they were willing to pay… That was as far as they were willing to go. They looked at Caruso and said ‘we can go to $7 million a year, but above that it gets too cost-prohibitive.”
According to ESPN’s Zach Lowe, the decision by the Lakers was made mainly due to not wanting to pay the luxury tax even though there were no rules prohibiting them from matching or even exceeding the deal Caruso was offered by Chicago.
This was obviously a bad decision as the Lakers currently boast the oldest roster in the NBA. The Lakers could have used a younger guard who can play d and knows how to play in the LeBron James system.
Needless to say, we will all be watching to see how this new look Lakers roster will gel together.
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