Lakers’ Updated Roster, Starting Lineup After Expected Andre Drummond Contract
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David Zalubowski/Associated Press

The Los Angeles Lakers will add some much-needed post depth in the form of Andre Drummond when he clears waivers, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN. 

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Andre Drummond intends to sign with the Lakers once he clears waivers, per @wojespn

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Drummond reached a buyout with the Cleveland Cavaliers after his team was unable to trade him before last Thursday’s deadline.

It gives the team some added flexibility with its lineups when healthy and some valuable depth with stars LeBron James and Anthony Davis currently dealing with injuries.

Lakers’ Full Strength Lineup

PG: Dennis Schroder, Alex Caruso

SG: Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Wesley Matthews

SF: LeBron James, Talen Horton-Tucker

PF: Anthony Davis, Kyle Kuzma, Markieff Morris

C: Andre Drummond, Montrezl Harrell, Marc Gasol

Kyle Kuzma has been in and out of the starting lineup this year but will likely remain there going forward until James returns to full strength. Markieff Morris has also been starting and can stick in this role with Davis unavailable.

Talen Horton-Tucker should continue to see increased minutes off the bench until the squad is back to full strength.

Drummond will be especially valuable in the short term as an upgrade over Marc Gasol, who is averaging 4.8 points, 4.0 rebounds and 1.2 blocks per game.

Though Gasol’s defensive presence shouldn’t be overlooked, Drummond is a much bigger threat with his averages of 17.5 points, 13.5 rebounds and 1.2 blocks per game this year with Cleveland. The two-time All-Star can help generate more offense that is often missing without the team’s two best players.

Head coach Frank Vogel said last week Davis is still “a ways away,” while James is reportedly out four to six weeks with a high ankle sprain, per Shams Charania of Stadium.

The latest addition can help weather the storm and keep the Lakers high in the standings.

More importantly, the move also gives Los Angeles more options for the postseason when everyone is healthy.

Even with the NBA moving away from traditional centers, Drummond can bully teams inside while making a major impact on the boards. It could also free Davis to play the 4, where he is most comfortable.

If the matchup dictates, Vogel can always go with smaller lineups as he did during the run to the title last postseason.

It’s a low-risk move that makes the Lakers better and deeper for the playoff run.

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