Andre Drummond and the Cleveland Cavaliers agreed to a buyout earlier this week after the organization was unable to find a trade partner prior the league’s Thursday deadline. Before the weekend is out, the 27-year-old big man intends to find himself on a new team.
According to Adrian Wojnarowski, Drummond plans to sign with the Los Angeles Lakers later on Sunday. The two-time All-Star reportedly chose the Lakers over the Clippers, Knicks, Celtics, Hornets. Once he’s cleared waivers, the former Cavs center will be on of the NBA’s top title contenders.
The move will end Drummond’s month-long break-up with the Cavaliers that began back in February. The franchise opted to hold the veteran center out of games while searching for a trade partner, but were ultimately unsuccessful. Both parties agreed that a buyout would be beneficial for both sides.
Drummond will now get a chance to join the defending champs, despite not having played in a game since Feb. 12. Prior to that date, he averaged 17.5 points and 13.5 rebounds in 25 appearances for the Cavaliers.
Once Andre Drummond clears waivers at 5 PM ET, he intends to sign with the Lakers, his agent Jeff Schwartz of @excelbasketball tells ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) March 28, 2021
Drummond will join a struggling frontcourt on the Lakers, providing much-needed depth at center. Los Angeles has gotten shaky play from 2020 free agent additions Marc Gasol and Montrezl Harrell and has been without an injured Anthony Davis since mid-February.
The Lakers got more unfortunate news last week when LeBron James suffered a high ankle sprain. Without the team’s two best players, Los Angeles has slipped to fourth in the Western Conference standings at 29-17.
Drummond will also be able to help the Lakers counteract the Nets recent signing of LaMarcus Aldridge. The seven-time All-Star agreed to a buyout last week with the Spurs and will join the Eastern Conference superteam in Brooklyn.
It might take time for Drummond to get back up to speed after sitting out for the last month, but once he does the Lakers will get a reliable rebounder and rim protector to help pursue another title this summer.