Luol Deng and the Los Angeles Lakers Reach Agreement on Buyout

The Lakers signed Deng to a four year, $72 million contract in 2016.

Because of contracts doled out under the previous regime, the Los Angeles Lakers didn't have financial flexibility as 2018 National Basketball Association free agency loomed.

It led to plenty of justified griping from Deng, who wanted the chance to play somewhere but understood that place wasn't going to be Los Angeles. He requested a buyout or a trade, but the Lakers found no takers and didn't want to absorb the salary-cap constraints of waiving him last season. The news of the buyout came from Shams Charania of The Athletic. The Lakers, meanwhile, now have the room to become an even more aggressive player in free agency than originally anticipated next summer, per ESPN.


The Lakers can now offer a free-agent star a maximum contract in July to partner with LeBron James. The Lakers will pay Deng just $6.27M a year over the next three years, which will give them over $35 million in cap space for the 2019-20 season.

The Lakers didn't disclose the details of a probable buyout with Deng, but they announced the move on the first day in which the final season of Deng's mammoth deal could be stretched over a three-season span of the Lakers' cap limit.

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