The Lakers seem to be out of the running for Kevin Durant before the free agency period begins on July 1st, but they look to have secured a meeting with another high-quality wing this summer: Dallas Mavericks small forward, Chandler Parsons.
Mike Leslie of WFAA in Dallas reports that the Lakers, Magic, and Clippers have all agreed to meet with the Parsons once free agency begins.
In 2014, Parsons and the Mavericks agreed on a 3-year deal worth $46 million with a player option for the third season, which Parsons opted out of. Dallas is reportedly trying to swing for the fences this offseason, much like any other year, but also has to retain Dirk Nowitzki, who took a pay cut during his last run as a free agent and may not want to do so this time.
The Mavericks are expected to pursue point guard Mike Conley and center Hassan Whiteside during this free agency period. They also need to resign Dirk Nowitzki.
If Parsons is a player the Lakers are seriously interested in, they may have the upper-hand on most other teams as they, along with Orlando, are the only two teams with meetings that can offer Parsons a max contract that he wants. If Dallas hangs around and waits for answers on other free agents, the Lakers could land Parsons if there is mutual interest and they act quickly.
With the team being basically out of the Kevin Durant sweepstakes, it may make sense to bring in a guy like Parsons. He is an above average defender, can shoot from deep with a career average of 38 percent from 3, and possesses the athleticism to be able to push the pace with the young core. There are concerns of injuries with the small forward though, as he has missed 37 games the past two seasons due to nagging knee injuries.
One thing is for sure, this free agency period is going to be wild with so many teams having enormous amounts of cap space, so buckle up.
For a list of free agents the Lakers could pursue this summer, click here.