Drummond on future with Lakers: “I’m looking forward to building more with them”

Andre Drummond
Credit: NBAE via Getty Images

With the Phoenix Suns breezing through a 4-0 sweep of the Denver Nuggets in the Western Conference Finals, Los Angeles Lakers fans are again wondering what could have been after the Lakers took the same Suns to six games despite LeBron James not being 100% and Anthony Davis missing a sizable portion of the back half of the series. As Lakers fans have nothing to do other than look back and cast blame, there have been more reasons than injuries being thrown around for why the Lakers are out of the 2021 NBA Playoffs. One person receiving some of the blame — as he usually did from the moment he arrived in L.A. — was Andre Drummond who was added to the roster via the buyout market.

As he was signed mid-season by the Lakers after he cleared waivers, Andre Drummond will be a part of the 2021 free agency class. Markieff Morris was added by the Lakers via the buyout market in the previous season, with the team bringing him back on a one-year, veteran minimum deal for the 2020-21 season. That was an easy decision considering how well he fit in as well as the end result of the season.

Drummond? The argument for bringing him back will be hard, especially considering the fact that he will probably command a deal much more than the vet minimum. Either way, there appears to be mutual interest for a reunion between the Lakers and Drummond (h/t Harrison Faigen and Silver Screen & Roll):

Judging from Vogel and Drummond’s comments, it appears that Drummond was well-liked on the team. That could go a long way for a franchise that touted its team camaraderie as a big reason for its championship during the 2019-20 season. And as Drummond states, he only had so much time to fully get acclimated with the team. When you throw in the fact that LeBron James and Anthony Davis spent almost as much time playing with him in the playoffs as they did in the regular season, it’s not a surprise that the experiment didn’t work as well as everyone would have hoped.

Drummond still believes we saw “glimpses” of the potential he and Davis could have had as a starting frontcourt together. He thinks those “glimpses” could become more common with another season together.

We’ll have to see how free agency pans out for the Lakers and the rest of the league. It’ll especially be interesting to see if the Lakers put an emphasis on bringing Drummond back, prioritizing him possibly above the likes of Dennis Schröder, Alex Caruso, Talen Horton-Tucker, and others. If he’s brought back, don’t expect a departure from the starting lineup, as Marc Stein of The New York Times recently reported that the Lakers promised a starting job for his services. I’d assume that that would again be a promise if he were to return.

Leave a Reply