Acquiring Dwight Howard isn’t the Los Angeles Lakers’ lone remaining offseason objective.
In an effort to add a bit of depth to an extremely unimpressive bench, L.A. management is reportedly looking into signing Grant Hill and/or Brandon Rush. The latter player is a restricted free agent with the Golden State Warriors, whereas the former is an unrestricted free agent who’s also getting serious interest from the New York Knicks.
Last year, Rush averaged 10 points on 50 percent shooting in 26 minutes of action per game. He also shot 45 percent from behind the arc – a figure noticeably better than his career 41 percent average. The Lakers were one of the league’s worst three-point shooting teams in 2012, and Rush would change that instantly. He’s not great off-the-dribble, but given the playmakers on L.A.’s roster right now – he doesn’t really have to be.
Hill, 39, is a proven veteran in the NBA who successfully rejuvenated his career during these past five seasons with the Phoenix Suns. Last year, through 49 games, he averaged 10 points on 45 percent from the field in 28 minutes of play. He’s not a good three-point shooter a la Rush, but he can do more things off the dribble. Plus, he’s a more heady player and can actually lead the offense when the starters are off the floor.
So, what’s the latest on both players? Well, via John Gambadoro and Yannis Koutroupis:
Hearing Grant Hill leaning towards Lakers after big push by Steve Nash and Kobe Bryant— John Gambadoro (@Gambo620) July 13, 2012
Brandon Rush confirms the Los Angeles Lakers are interested in him. Negotiations are ongoing.— Yannis Koutroupis (@YannisHW) July 16, 2012
For what it’s worth, on Sunday, Frank Isola tweeted this:
Grant Hill, NBA's second oldest player behind Kurt Thomas, is considering Knicks, Lakers & Heat. Hill's wife, the singer Tamia, prefers NY— Frank Isola (@FisolaNYDN) July 15, 2012
At this point, the smart money is on L.A. ending up with Hill. Getting Rush would be complicated for the Lakers because of his restricted free agent status.
Considering how bad anemic the bench is right now, either guy would be a welcome addition.
Update: Hill is now a Clipper.