The Los Angeles Lakers are not sitting still this off-season and online gambling handicappers are taking notice. The Lakers already re-signed guard Derek Fisher and added guard Steve Blake and now they have added forward Matt Barnes who was in high demand around the league.
The Lakers are the second choice behind the Miami Heat in NBA futures at Internet gambling companies.
Online gambling odds will favor the Lakers on most nights next season. The Lakers are the two-time defending champions and until Miami signed LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, they were the favorites to win the NBA title. The Lakers could still end up winning the title. They still have the best player in the league in Kobe Bryant, an excellent center in Paul Gasol and a number of other talented players including Andrew Bynum and Lamar Odom. Now they have added Barnes to the mix.
The Lakers signed Barnes to a two-year deal worth a reported $3.6 million dollars. It was thought that Barnes would be going to Toronto but Barnes’ last team, the Orlando Magic don’t have salary cap room for a big sign-and-trade deal and Toronto doesn’t have the cap space to sign Barnes without some sort of sign and trade.
Barnes has been all over the NBA in a short amount of time. The Lakers will be his eighth team. He has averaged 7.2 points per game in his career. He started 58 games for the Magic last season and averaged 8.8 points and 5.5 rebounds per game. It is expected that Barnes will take the place of Shannon Brown on the Lakers roster. The Lakers have 11 players under contract so it would seem that Brown is on his way out.
The Lakers have made some minor changes to their roster that should make them even better next season vs. NBA odds at Internet gambling companies. The addition of Blake is a good one as he gives them shooting off the bench. Now with Barnes they have a player who can really defend to come off the bench. The Lakers were strong last season but general manager Mitch Kupchak knows that winning in 2010-2011 will not be easy especially with the Heat expected to be their main challengers for an NBA title.