There’s sure to be plenty of rumors surrounding Earl Clark this summer, but the free agent says he wants to stay with the Los Angeles Lakers, even if that means turning down more money and a bigger role elsewhere.

According to Mark Medina, Clark is prepared to turn down more dollars with a different franchise if it means he can stay in Los Angeles:

[pullquote]Even if he’s offered a lower salary and fewer years compared to other offers, Earl Clark maintains he’d prefer re-signing this offseason with the Lakers.

“It’s not always about the money,” said Clark, who earned $1.2 million this season. “You could go somewhere with more money and be in a bad situation. I’m not trying to do that.”[/pullquote]

Clark has said all year long that he wants to return to the Lakers as they’re the first team that really gave him a shot – plus, of course, it helps that they’re the Lakers.

In his exit interview earlier in the week, Clark says that he’d take a lesser role to play on a team with the likes of Nash, Bryant, Gasol and Howard if it means he has a chance to win a championship.

I’m pretty sure that the Lakers will be interested in re-signing Clark this summer: they said themselves that shooting, athleticism and defense are the kind of qualities that they’ll look for in players to bring in this off-season, and Clark can do a little bit of everything. For a team with a lot of ageing players on the roster, they definitely need to keep hold of this 25-year-old.