The Los Angeles Lakers had to make a decision today on their roster size.
Sitting at 15 players, the Lakers are at the league maximum. The team had to decide before today’s league deadline whether they wanted to guarantee the contracts of Metta World Peace, Tarik Black and Marcelo Huertas for the rest of the season.
According to Mike Bresnahan from the L.A. Times, the purple and gold opted to keep all three players on their roster:
All things considered, this isn’t much of a surprise.
While World Peace has played sparingly so far this season, he has acted as a coach and mentor on the bench for the team’s younger players, especially second-year forward Julius Randle, who battles daily in practice against the man formally known as Ron Artest.
Huertas has also struggled to find playing time due to Jordan Clarkson and D’Angelo Russell commanding more minutes than the 32-year-old.
However, if the Lakers waived Huertas and then either Clarkson or Russell picked up an injury, the team would suddenly be left without a backup point guard. Therefore, it makes sense to keep the Brazilian on the roster.
Since falling out of Byron Scott’s rotation, Black may have been viewed by some as the most likely candidate out of the three to be waived. However, at 24, Black is still an interesting prospect who has shown promise while playing for the Lakers and their D-League affiliate, the D-Fenders.
Look for Black to get more minutes at the center position as the season winds down as the team will likely want to see what he’s got before he becomes a free agent this summer.