Matt Barnes signed tonight with the Lakers. The deal is for $1.77 million next season and then about $2 milion for 2011-12 at his option. He joins Theo Ratliff, who was signed earlier today, and Steve Blake, who put pen to paper, earlier this month. Those three represent a significant upgrade to the Lakers’ second unit, which got run off the court far too often last season. About all Mitch Kupchak needs to do now is sign second-round draft picks Derrick Caracter and Devin Ebanks to complete the Lakers’ 13-man roster.
Not a bad summer for Kupchak, who didn’t have a lot of money to toss at free agents. He had the mid-level exception of $5.8 million and the veteran’s minimum of $1.35 million, and that was it. He used $4 million on Blake and then $1.77 million on Barnes. He gave Ratliff the $1.35 veteran’s minimum. The draft picks could come as cheap as a little less than $500,000 apiece next season. They have to make the team to get paid.
So, the Lakers will say goodbye and good luck to Shannon Brown (who is as yet unsigned), Jordan Farmar (who signed a three-season, $12-million deal with the New Jersey Nets), Josh Powell (who is about to sign with the Atlanta Hawks), DJ Mbenga (unsigned) and Adam Morrison (unsigned).