The Lakers bought themselves four more years of "Swaggy P."
Nick Young, the good-natured high-volume shooter who gave himself the above nickname, agreed to a four-year, $21.5-million contract Friday to stay with the Lakers.
It was the second transaction on a busy day for the Lakers, who also acquired Houston Rockets guard Jeremy Lin and the Rockets’ first-round pick next season.
The two deals dented the Lakers’ chances at signing Carmelo Anthony, who would now have to accept less than a maximum deal to join them, a less likely scenario.
The Lakers still have not been officially told they are out of the running for Anthony but are acting as if they think New York or Chicago will get him.
If they lost out on Anthony, they probably would not reunite with Pau Gasol, who wanted to see a massive roster upgrade before returning.
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If Young’s salary for the coming season started at roughly $5 million, the Lakers could still have as much as $8.7 million in cap space for free agents. They could add another $6 million to that if they waived Steve Nash and stretched out his salary over three seasons.
The Lakers will also gain $2.7 million in additional spending power in an exception from the league, once the team reaches the $63.1 million salary cap.
Young, 29, averaged a career-high 17.9 points last season and became a fan favorite on a team in desperate need of charisma amid a sad 27-55 record.
He declined a player option for $1.2 million last month to become a free agent but wanted to stay with the Lakers.
"I’ve done hundreds of deals over the years but I’m not sure I’ve ever had one that I’ve been so excited about," Young’s agent, Mark Bartelstein, told The Times. "This feels great. He certainly had a chance to make more money coming off the year he had but this is where he wanted to make his home."
Young played basketball at Reseda Cleveland High and then at USC.