When the Los Angeles Lakers signed Montrezl Harrell away from the Clippers in free agency it was applauded. The defending champions had just added the reigning Sixth Man of the Year to their arsenal. As a Laker fan, you had to be thrilled.
Fast forward about seven months and that excitement was now gone. Harrell was now logging minimal minutes if any during the most crucial time of the year. Most would argue it was Harrell’s defensive play that led to his lack of playing time, but the addition of Andre Drummond didn’t help either.
With Drummond taking a lot of his minutes and Marc Gasol also getting some run, Harrell was the odd man out. Now, with the season being over, Harrell has a decision to make. The big man signed a two-year year last off-season, but does have a player option. Harrell could seek greener pastures, but according to Dan Woike of the LA Times, it’s still too soon for Harrell to make a decision. (via @hmfaigen)
— Harrison Faigen (@hmfaigen) June 4, 2021
Harrell has been a consummate professional even though he didn’t see the floor as much as expected. It’s not farfetched to assume that Harrell probably wants to play for a team where he gets more minutes, but there’s no rush to make his decision.
We will have to wait and see how the cards fall, but again, the Lakers could not have asked for a better player to handle this situation. While it may be the end of the relationship, at least they tried to make it work. Harrell was a spark plug off the bench for the Lakers. Could he have a more expanded role next season for the purple and gold? Only time will tell.