Lakers sign guard Jodie Meeks
LOS ANGELES -- Los Angeles Lakers executives Mitch Kupchak and Jim Buss are set to begin their respective vacations this week after a busy summer that saw the team pull off two blockbuster deals to acquire Steve Nash and Dwight Howard, but before the lights went out in the Lakers offices there were a couple of minor moves to take care of Monday.
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The Lakers officially signed guard Jodie Meeks after coming to terms with the free agent last week and also officially inked Devin Ebanks, after initially agreeing to a new deal with the small forward more than a month ago.
Meeks signed a two-year deal, with the first year at $1.4 million and the second being a Lakers' team option that could be worth up to $2 million with incentives, according to his agent David Bauman, who also serves as Ebanks' agent.
Ebanks agreed to a one-year deal with the Lakers worth $1,085,000, according to Bauman.
"I'm confident things will work themselves out in the future in L.A. for Jodie," Bauman, who also represents Lakers forward Metta World Peace, told ESPNLosAngeles.com in a phone interview.
Meeks is a career 37.1 percent shooter from 3-point range. More than half of his made field goals last season for the Sixers were from beyond the arc (97 of 191).
Ebanks, who turns 23 in October, averaged 4.0 points and 2.3 rebounds last year for the Lakers in his second season after being drafted in the second round out of West Virginia in 2010. He started 12 games, beginning the season as the starting small forward over World Peace and later filling in for Kobe Bryant for five games when Bryant was out with a left shin injury late in the year. Ebanks averaged 6.4 points and 3.2 rebounds on 47.8 percent shooting as a starter.
Ebanks had agreed to the Lakers' qualifying offer back in the first week of July, but held off on officially signing the deal for two reasons.
First, he knew the Lakers were active players in the trade market and his new contract could end up facilitating a deal should he sign it before the dust had settled on all their major moves. Secondly, by waiting, Ebanks had more time to shop his services to other teams around the league in search of a more lucrative deal.
"We basically made the decision to hold off and yet the Lakers always said to us that 'Devin, we think you're an important part our team,'" said Bauman.
The signings bring the Lakers' roster to 14 players for next season out of a maximum 15 spots.
There is currently a logjam at point guard with Nash, Steve Blake, Darius Morris, Chris Duhon (who was acquired in the Howard deal) in the mix, as well as combo guard Andrew Goudelock, whose 2012-13 contract is not fully guaranteed.