LOS ANGELES — The Lakers are looking for more size. Anthony Davis has been one of the three best centers in the NBA this season, but he remains sidelined with a foot injury. With AD out, Thomas Bryant has found a comfort level as a floor-stretching scoring big starting next to LeBon James, but he is defensively challenged. Wenyen Gabriel has his moments but is still raw.
So the Lakers are reportedly bringing in two big men to work out for them, DeMarcus Cousins and Meyers Leonard (as first reported by Shams Charania of The Athletic).
“I mean, I can’t really confirm or deny anything,” Lakers coach Darvin Ham said Thursday before his team lost to another ridiculous Luka Doncic outing. “We live in an age where everything gets leaked, but, I’ve said this before, it would be irresponsible for us not to see what’s out there, just in general terms of anybody.”
Cousins proved he could be a solid backup on the court last season, first in Milwaukee when Brook Lopez was out and he averaged 9.1 points and 5.8 rebounds a game. When Lopez got healthy the Bucks moved on, and the Nuggets picked Cousins up to play behind Nikola Jokic, where he averaged 8.9 points and 5.5 rebounds a game (and he had a 31-point night against the Rockets).
However, Cousins’ reputation as a challenge for the coaching staff and front office has limited his options.
Leonard has been out of the league since 2021, when he used an anti-Semitic slur during a live stream. He apologized and completed several steps to educate himself, but he was also dealing with complications from a surgically repaired ankle that limited him, so no team picked him up. Leonard said those ankle issues are behind him.
It’s possible, maybe even likely the Lakers sign neither of these players. The Lakers currently have a full 15-man roster, but Sterling Brown is on a 10-day contract so a roster spot could open up again. If the Lakers brought in Cousins or Leonard, it would be on a 10-day contract as they try to get through until Davis returns (he is reportedly ramping up activities but is weeks away).
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Lakers reportedly to work out DeMarcus Cousins, Meyers Leonard originally appeared on NBCSports.com