The Los Angeles Lakers had great locker-room chemistry last season, with that chemistry being one of the driving forces behind the team’s success especially in the tight-knit bubble situation. One of the architects of that team chemistry is coming back to the Lakers, as ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski is reporting that the Lakers are signing unrestricted free agent Jared Dudley to bring him back to the Lakers for his second season!
Free agent G Jared Dudley has agreed to a 1-year, $2.6M deal to return to the Lakers, agent Mark Bartelstein of @PrioritySports tells me and @ZachLowe_NBA.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 30, 2020
Jared Dudley did not play much throughout the regular season, and definitely did not play much during the season’s restart in either the seeding games or the actual playoffs. Still, he received nothing but praise from the organization and his fellow players throughout the season, and he was obviously a well-respected and wanted man in the locker room by the Lakers’ two superstars, LeBron James and Anthony Davis. He’s been in the “veteran locker-room leader” for some time now, most prominently rising to that as a part of the Brooklyn Nets while helping former Laker D’Angelo Russell develop.
He will return to his veteran locker-room leader role for the Lakers in the 2020-21 season, as the Lakers will need all the energy they can get off the bench throughout possibly an entire season without fans. Dudley is not shy about the aspect of talking, so he should help tremendously in that regard. This signing also isn’t too surprising, as Jared Dudley recently said that he expected to come back, even if it was going to take knocking on Rob Pelinka’s door himself.
Jared Dudley will be playing in his 14th season for the Lakers in 2020-21. He averaged 1.5 points, 1.2 rebounds, 0.6 assists, and 1.8 pump-up speeches per game in his first season with the Los Angeles Lakers.