November 16, 2012; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Former pro basketball player "Julius Dr. J" Irving sits next to Los Angeles Lakers Mitch Kupchak during the ceremony unveiling the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

NBA Rumors: Los Angeles Lakers still in a position to be 'big players' in free agency


The Los Angeles Lakers missed the the playoffs in the 2013-14 season,which is unacceptable.

The Lakers are usually very active in the offseason, but after giving Kobe Bryant another huge contract, they may not have a lot of flexibility.

However, according to Lakers’ general manager Mitch Kupchak, the Lakers will still be big players in free agency.

When we gave Kobe the extension, we took a lot of factors into consideration, including the factors you just mentioned. We felt it was the thing to do. We’re still in a position to be a big player in the free agent market. Signing Kobe when we did, we felt, gave us one of the top two or three free agents that would be available this summer. We had the rare opportunity to get that done and not have to wait until July 1. Everybody can debate whether they would have waited or not, but our mindset was: ‘This is somebody we can get done now, and we still have a chance to be a player financially with free agency.’ Cap space is valuable and you don’t want to misuse it. You do have to use it, but you don’t have to use it going forward unless you want to.

Whether that means they will make a major trade or simply re-sign Pau Gasol is still the question.

Tags: 2014 NBA Free Agency Kobe Bryant Los Angeles Lakers Mitch Kupchak NBA Rumors Pau Gasol

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