DeMar DeRozan drops truth bomb on potentially playing for the Lakers

Peter Dewey
3 Min Read
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Six-time All-Star DeMar DeRozan voiced an intriguing mindset about potentially playing for the Los Angeles Lakers in his career.

DeRozan, 34, is set to become an unrestricted free agent this offseason after spending the last three seasons with the Chicago Bulls.

“When I was a kid — everybody know I’m a Kobe [Bryant] guy at the end of the day,” DeRozan said. “Always been a Kobe guy, being a Laker fan since day one. You can’t never say no about playing home, especially if you’re playing for a historic team like the Lakers. So, time will tell. We’ll see where the cards fall. Until then, I’ll see what happens.”

While DeRozan did leave the door open when it comes to playing for the Lakers, he also shared how much he loves Chicago and that he’d like to stay with the franchise.

DeRozan and the Bulls have made the playoffs once in his three seasons with the franchise, and Chicago was knocked out in the play-in tournament by the Miami Heat in the 2023-24 season.

This season was a tough one for Chicago, as star guard Zach LaVine missed a large chunk of the season with a foot injury, eventually undergoing season-ending surgery. The Bulls also were without guard Lonzo Ball, who has dealt with knee issues for most of his time with the franchise.

DeRozan is still one of the better pure scorers in the NBA, averaging 24.0 points, 4.3 rebounds and 5.3 assists per game in the 2023-24 season while shooting 48.0 percent from the field and 33.3 percent from beyond the arc.

While he doesn’t shoot a ton of 3-point shots (DeRozan attempted just 2.8 shots from beyond the arc per game this season), the three-time All-NBA selection would give the Lakers another proven star and scoring option alongside Anthony Davis and LeBron James – should James remain with the franchise.

Los Angeles has a lot of moving parts this coming offseason since James and guard D’Angelo Russell can both opt out of their contracts to become free agents.

However, if the team — which is operating as if James will be back — can bring back the 39-year-old, DeRozan would be a solid veteran piece that fits the Lakers’ timeline to win a title as soon as next season.

Once free agency opens, the Lakers could be one of the teams that contact DeRozan to persuade him to leave Chicago.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.