Over the weekend, the Los Angeles Lakers provided a bit more clarity into the upcoming season.
On Sunday, the Lakers officially announced the arrival of Jeremy Lin along with a future first round draft pick and a second round draft pick in 2015 via a trade with the Houston Rockets for the rights to Sergei Lishchuk.
"This trade allows us to acquire a solid player who will make us a better team, as well as draft picks to improve our team in the future, while at the same time allowing us to maintain financial flexibility," Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak said in a statement. "In addition to what he'll bring us on the court, we think Jeremy will be warmly embraced by our fans and our community."
Although the trade was reported on Friday, the Lakers waited until Lin was able to complete a medical examination before announcing the deal on Sunday. Due to prior commitments, the newest Lakers' point guard flew in from China for the physical examinations before taking a flight back to Asia to complete his prior commitments.
Also over the weekend, two-time champion Pau Gasol announced that he would be signing with the Chicago Bulls via his Twitter account and personal website. Gasol, who spent seven years in Los Angeles, appeared to have made the decision with a heavy heart.
"Although the future is bright for me in Chicago, deciding not to return to Los Angeles was an extremely difficult decision," Gasol wrote on his website. "It is also difficult to leave Los Angeles, a city that I have come to love and a place where I was able to develop many close friendships and relationships. Despite the move, I intend to maintain close ties with the Los Angeles community, which will always feel like home to me."
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With Gasol officially leaving, the Lakers did not need to wait any longer to sign rookie Julius Randle. On Sunday, the team announced the signing of the No. 7 overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, and the rookie immediately took the floor for the Lakers' NBA Summer League game against the New Orleans Pelicans.
In 21 minutes, Randle scored 10 points and pulled down two rebounds. The former Kentucky Wildcat revealed that he signed the contract 20 minutes before tipoff and had not taken part in five-on-five basketball since the NCAA Championship game.
With Gasol gone, Lin’s trade official and Randle signed, the Lakers’ roster is beginning to fill out, but that should not slow down the Lakers’ front office activity.
After all, the team still needs to name a head coach.