Lakers add in the center Thomas Bryant in free agency, sources told The Times. Bryant, 24, spent his first season with the team after being selected in the second round of the 2017 NBA draft.
Bryant will be in contention for a spot in the Lakers’ starting lineup, sources said.
When healthy, Bryant has demonstrated the ability to play endurance, making over 40% of his three-point attempts in limited action during the 2019-20 and 2020-21 seasons.
Bryant suffered an ACL tear in January 2021 while playing for the Washington Wizards. At the time, he was averaging 14.3 points and 6.1 rebounds per game.
His contract with Lakers this is the minimum for a veteran with a year of experience.
He joins a free agent class based on youth and prospects, joining Lonnie Walker IV and Tony Brown Jr. The team also signed Juan Toscano-Anderson and Damian Jones. All new Lakers are under 30 years old.
The Lakers have 13 player contracts, not counting rookie Max Christie, who has yet to sign a rookie contract. If he does, the team will have one open spot on the roster, although the Lakers could create another by refusing to Venien Gabriel.
A team can only sign players with a veteran minimum.
Bryant played 27 games for the Wizards last season after recovering from a knee injury, averaging 7.4 points and 4.0 rebounds in 16.3 minutes.
He, like Jones, was previously in the Lakers organization, playing 15 games in the 2017-18 season. The Lakers waived him after that season when the team was trying to clear the cap spot in pursuit of LeBron James as a free agent.