Fifteen is now 14.
Tuesday afternoon, the Lakers released second-year forward Derrick Caracter.
Selected with the 58th pick of the 2010 NBA Draft, the UTEP-via-Louisville product, who suffered a knee injury during the preseason, hadn't appeared in a game with the Lakers. In four games with the NBDL's Los Angeles D-Fenders, he averaged 15.5 points, 7.5 rebounds, and 1.0 blocks in 23.5 minutes.
Last season, Caracter shuttled between the D-League and the big club, played 41 games for the Lakers, averaging 2.0 points and 1.1 rebounds in 5.2 minutes. He's a guy with some skill around the basket. Pretty good hands and good feet given his size. Unfortunately, the size issue with Caracter still constitutes a problem. For him to carve out a long NBA career -- and I do think he'll get a chance to play again in the league -- D.C. will definitely need to get slimmer and stronger.
His release opens up a roster spot, and with a roster spot comes speculation about what the Lakers might do to fill it. The Gilbert Arenas conversation is still alive, and apparently the Lakers have (shudder) inquired about Jonny Flynn. Perhaps there's another move out there Mitch Kupchak and Co. are exploring. On the other hand, the league's deadline for fully guaranteeing contracts is only days away, so the Lakers could just be letting go of a player they'd prefer not to pay going forward.
In a season filled with this sort of thing, the move with Caracter can be neatly added to the wait-and-see pile.