On Wednesday, the Los Angeles Lakers officially waived David Nwaba, possibly ending the LA-native's miraculous run with the purple and gold, in order to create the salary cap space required to sign Kentavious Caldwell-Pope to a reported one year $18 million contract.
Caldwell-Pope cannot officially sign with the Lakers until Nwaba clears waivers, but during that 48-hour process, another team can come in and claim the defensive-minded shooting guard that went un-drafted before finding a place on the Lakers' roster at the tail-end of the 2017-18 NBA season.
Salary cap expert Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders and Bleacher Report explained the logic. Along with clearing the space required to sign Caldwell-Pope, the Lakers would also be able to sign rookie Thomas Bryant via cap room for three or four years. Then, if Nwaba clears waivers, the Lakers can re-sign the former University High School and Santa Monica College atendee to a two-year contract.
Of course, this plan would only be possible if Nwaba clears waivers and another team doesn't step in to claim his non-guaranteed $1.3 million contract.
Essentially, the Lakers waived Nwaba not because of his play or because of anything to do with his attitude but because of salary cap rules and the business of basketball. If all goes according to plan, the Lakers will get the 6-foot 4-inch guard with a 7-foot wingspan back on the roster and the dream will continue.
Summer League Update
In terms of immediate effects, the Lakers will be without Nwaba for Wednesday night's Summer League game. Considering the team ended Monday night's win with only four healthy bodies, LA was looking at possibly only suiting up eight players for Wednesday night's Summer League playoff game against the Philadelphia 76ers.
However, both Lonzo Ball (groin) and Kyle Kuzma (cramps) have recovered from injuries that kept them out of Monday's win over Sacrament, and both are available to play on Wednesday night. So, the Lakers should have 10 healthy bodies for Wednesday's game. If the Lakers progress in the tournament and advance as far as the final, they face the possibility of playing five games in six days with a razor thin squad that is far from 100 percent healthy.
Tip-off of the Lakers and the 76ers is 7:30 p.m. Pacific Time.