Exciting news for Laker fans was shared by Shams Charania of The Athletic recently, revealing that the Los Angeles Lakers have secured Jarred Vanderbilt for a four-year contract extension worth $48 million. Originally starting his NBA journey with the Denver Nuggets, Vanderbilt has impressively developed into a top-tier starting wing player in the league. This signing showcases the Lakers’ commitment to strengthening their roster with talented individuals like Vanderbilt.
While Vanderbilt may not be the most threatening offensive player, his defensive prowess is truly remarkable. He has the ability to shut down some of the NBA’s top scorers, making him an invaluable asset to any team. When paired with superstars like LeBron James and Anthony Davis, Vanderbilt will play a specific role that he appears both eager and capable of fulfilling. This combination promises to create a formidable force on the court.
In a significant trade last season, the Lakers strategically acquired Vanderbilt from the Utah Jazz. This major deal involved sending Russell Westbrook to Utah and in return, welcoming Vanderbilt, D’Angelo Russell, and Malik Beasley to their team. The move demonstrated the Lakers’ commitment to strengthening their roster and making strategic player acquisitions. In contrast to the inconsistent performances of Russell and Beasley in Los Angeles, Vanderbilt showed remarkable consistency and dedication in his role. As a result, he was rightfully recognized for his contributions with a well-deserved contract extension. This is a testament to his reliability and value to the team.
Vanderbilt’s shooting struggles didn’t go unnoticed during the Lakers’ previous season, occasionally posing a challenge for the team. Opponents found it advantageous to leave him open on the perimeter while focused on defending against James and Davis in the paint. While it may be a challenge for the Lakers to handle, it’s worth noting that Vanderbilt is a young player at just 24 years old. Given his age, there is definitely room for improvement in his outside shooting skills.