For once, the NBA did something that hurt a team led by LeBron James. Commissioner Adam Silver has announced they have denied an attempt by the Los Angeles Lakers to exempt Luol Deng’s $5 million salary through 2022, though it may not really matter. The Lakers have already managed to grab just about every free agent they wanted this offseason anyway.
Deng’s contract was stretched for cap reasons, and now the Lakers could really use that space he’s taking up. Unfortunately for the Lakers, just because it’s inconvenient to pay up doesn’t mean they don’t have to do it. The Lakers have to deal with this Deng contract until the end of next year.
However, few people will feel sorry for the world champions. Despite Deng’s contract, the money-strapped Lakers still managed to acquire two prolific bench assets and had the audacity to ask for more. I guess we can’t blame them. People tend to ask for more, regardless of how much they’re given.
These days the Lakers hardly lose, but at least they lost in court. This time.