Like all NBA teams, the Los Angeles Lakers are looking to build up a roster that's strong enough to carry them to the 2017 finals. Aside from the upcoming NBA Draft, another way that the team is planning on doing this is through free agency.
The Lakers have a long list of players they want to get once free agency begins next month. One of those is Harrison Barnes of the Golden State Warriors.
Compared to other players on the Warriors' bench, Barnes is not a very high-profile player, but he has been a solid one after averaging 9.6 points and 4.9 rebounds during the 2016 postseason. But, aside from his dependability, there's also another reason why the Lakers want to get him.
As noted by Sporting News, the Lakers want Barnes as a fallback option in case they don't get Kevin Durant, who is also expected to get a lot of offers once free agency begins. Of course, as a free agent, the LA franchise can lure Branes with a tempting offer. However, since he will be a restricted free agent, that means Golden State can also match whatever offer he is presented with.
And, given how the Warriors are performing at the current finals, the team will most likely keep everyone intact and get new strong players in preparation for next season. In other words, they are willing to spend to build up a championship dynasty. This is what they did two years ago which led the team to becoming the 2015 champions.
At this point, it's really hard to tell how all this will go down and if the Lakers will really try to pursue Barnes, who is reportedly expected to receive $20 million a year if the Warriors decide to retain him.
For the athlete though, despite being open to the idea of leaving Golden State, he is still very much focused on the idea of staying with a team that's capable of building a legacy in the NBA.
"This could be my last time getting here," he said about being in the finals. "Regardless if I stayed or left, So I just want to really enjoy this moment and give it all I have. You don't know. You look at the Spurs, they have guys who could have commanded a lot of money, and almost 20 years later, five championships later, here are those guys still there."