- Dave McMenamin, ESPN.com
- 0 Shares
LOS ANGELES -- The Los Angeles Lakers started off a week that promises to be a free-agent frenzy for the league by inviting unrestricted free agent forward Jason Kapono to its practice facilities Monday, a league source confirmed to ESPNLosAngeles.com.
Kapono spent the last two seasons in Philadelphia, where he played a minimal role. He averaged 5.7 points per game in 2009-11 and saw his average dip to just 0.7 points per game last season as his minutes were cut from 17.1 to 4.7 per game.
Despite the limited playing time, Kapono's time with the Sixers allowed him to become acquainted with player development coach Quin Snyder. Snyder was hired as an assistant on new Lakers coach Mike Brown's staff this summer.
The 6-foot-8, 215-pound former UCLA Bruin has career averages of 6.9 points and 1.8 rebounds while shooting 43.7 percent from beyond the arc. He led the league in 3-point accuracy in back-to-back seasons, connecting on 51.4 percent for Miami in 2006-07 and 48.3 percent for Toronto in '07-08.
Yahoo! Sports first reported Kapono's planned meeting with the Lakers.
If the Lakers were to sign Kapono, he would likely fetch the veteran's minimum salary, worth about $1 million.
The Lakers ranked in the bottom half of the league in 3-point percentage last season (18th at 35.2 percent) and were right in the middle in 3-pointers made per game (15th at 6.2). While Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak recently identified a ball-handling guard and a back-up big man as two holes the team needs to fill on its roster, adding a proven outside shooter would help make up for the departures of Vladimir Radmanovic and Sasha Vujacic in recent seasons.
ESPNNewYork.com's Jared Zwerling reported that Kapono will definitely not re-sign with Philadelphia and also has interest in the New York Knicks.
Dave McMenamin covers the Lakers for ESPNLosAngeles.com.
1mMichael C. Wright