The Los Angeles Lakers are bringing in a pair of veterans to fortify their bench and add some key experience.
Howard’s agent confirmed Monday that the veteran center will join the Lakers for a third stint. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Ariza’s agents confirmed that his pact with the Lakers is a one-year contract.
It would have been hard to believe with how Howard’s first stint ended that he’d ever return to Los Angeles once, much less twice. It speaks to the valuable contribution he made to the team’s 2020 championship, as he averaged 5.8 points and 4.6 rebounds while playing strong defense. One Lakers veteran went out of his way to recruit Howard, demonstrating that the veteran center’s contributions were not forgotten.
Ariza also has experience with the Lakers. He won a title there in 2009, producing several key contributions during that playoff year. The UCLA product averaged 11.3 points and 4.2 rebounds per game in the NBA Finals that year.
Depth was a big issue for the Lakers last season, especially due to injuries to LeBron James and Anthony Davis. Adding the likes of Howard and Ariza should help with that next year as they try to reclaim the NBA title.