Official: Lakers waive Thomas Bryant

NBA: Los Angeles Lakers at Los Angeles Clippers
Apr 11, 2018; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Lakers center Thomas Bryant (31) handles the ball during the fourth quarter against the Los Angeles Clippers at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers announced on Saturday that they have waived center Thomas Bryant. Bryant was drafted with the 42nd overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft.

Bryant appeared in only 15 games last year. The rookie averaged 1.5 points and 1.1 rebounds in those matches but was a force in the G-League playing alongside the South Bay Lakers.

The Lakers are seemingly making several important transactions while gearing up for free agency. Tyler Ennis was also waived this week while the Lakers are reportedly choosing to keep Ivica Zubac whose contract will be guaranteed after Saturday’s deadline.

By waiving Bryant before the same deadline, the Lakers will reduce his cap hit from the non-guaranteed $1.5 million deal. The empty roster spot created by waiving Bryant, however, holds a cap hold of approximately $830,000.

Waiving Ennis and Bryant could be just as much about creating roster spots as it is for saving some cap space.

The Lakers also drafted Moritz Wagner in the 2018 NBA Draft and are expecting him to compete for minutes in the front court with Zubac (if he is not traded) and any potential free agent signings. Bryant was not expected to play heavy minutes but could have been a depth piece in case of injuries.

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