Why The Lakers Must Sign A Backup Center And Potential Options
The Lakers lost to the Houston Rockets on Wednesday, 114-110, which was an atrocious loss. LA was missing Anthony Davis, as it was the second night of a back-to-back, and it’s an “organizational decision” to sit him out on one of the back-to-back games. The team is also missing backup center Mo Bamba, who is out with a high ankle sprain.
This left Wenyen Gabriel as the only center on the roster. With an open roster spot, it is baffling that Rob Pelinka and the front office have not added another center. They could even sign one to a 10-day contract to get them through this stretch.
Gabriel is undersized at center, as he is 6'9'' and 205 lbs. When Davis and Bamba are out, they have no player 6'10'' or taller. They are in desperate need of more size off the bench.
After this eye-opening performance, Pelinka must bring in a backup center. Some solid options are available, including Nerlens Noel, DeMarcus Cousins, and Serge Ibaka.
Noel is a solid rebounder and rim protector. He is exactly what LA needs down low and he would be a great depth pickup.
Cousins is a more notable name to fans, as he was a star center before suffering multiple injuries. He has not suited up this season but averaged 9/6/2 in 48 games last season. The six-time All-Star could be a good rebounder and bring more offense to the table. However, he does not have the same defensive presence compared to Noel.
Ibaka is another potential option to be a backup center. He is another player that thrives as a rebounder and rim protector. The 33-year-old has championship experience and could be a serviceable backup big man.
✅ Thunder lose to Raptors— Lakers All Day Everyday (@LADEig) March 17, 2023
Lakers move up to 9th 🙏 pic.twitter.com/nJSsZGZAQn
The Lakers sit in 9th place in the Western Conference, with a crucial game against the Dallas Mavericks on Friday. Bringing in a backup center for this stretch run with their open roster spot should be a no-brainer for Pelinka.