NBA free agency: Lakers make Ryan Kelly restricted free agent

in the first quarter during an NBA basketball game in Los Angeles, Calif., on Friday, April 4, 2014.  (Keith Birmingham Pasadena Star-News)

in the first quarter during an NBA basketball game in Los Angeles, Calif., on Friday, April 4, 2014.
(Keith Birmingham Pasadena Star-News)

The Lakers took a small step in providing clarity to their nearly barren roster, extending reserve forward Ryan Kelly with a $1.1 million qualifying offer that will make him a restricted free agent.

The move was expected after Kelly averaged eight points on 42.3 percent shooting and 33.8 percent from three-point range after the Lakers selected him with the 48th pick of the 2013 NBA Draft. The Lakers went against offering an extended qualifying offer to reserve forward Kent Bazemore in hopes to maximize cap space to pursue LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony in free agency.

The Lakers have a $3 million cap hold to secure Kelly, but he likely gained the edge because there are fewer power forwards he will have to compete on the open market than Bazemore. Kelly made $490,180 this season and would likely only need a slight raise to secure him. By making Kelly a restricted free agent, the Lakers have the right to match any offer he receives from other teams. Although Kelly will entertain those offers, he prefers playing with the Lakers after receiving plenty of opportunities to develop.

RELATED:

Pau Gasol’s legacy with Los Angeles Lakers proves far-reaching on cusp of NBA free agency


Los Angeles Lakers, Kobe Bryant know the path to rebuilding and frustration that comes with it


NBA free agency: Lakers’ Kent Bazemore won’t receive qualifying offer to become restricted free agent

Follow L.A. Daily News Lakers beat writer Mark Medina on Twitter and on Facebook. E-mail him at mark.medina@langnews.com

Facebook Twitter Plusone Digg Reddit Stumbleupon Tumblr Email
  • Jonathan Avitia

    Lakers should bring him back smh

    • subject_90

      They would be wise to keep him and Marshall