That means the Lakers could have competition to keep their role players. As an athletic guard who can defend, unrestricted free agent Caruso will have suitors. League executives think he could draw interest at the full midlevel exception range, which is $9.5 million next season. (Caruso currently earns $2.7 million.)
Bobby Marks: Update on LAL cap situation: The team still has the $4.8M room ML. Since the team did not exhaust all of their cap space yesterday ( $1.7M remaining), they can still sign Alex Caruso (had a $1.6M cap hold) using the using early bird provision and exceed the cap.
Bobby Marks: Looks like LAL will use part of the $4.8M room ML to sign Alex Caruso. After a busy day of signing 5 players and finalizing the AD trade, LAL is about a $1M+ below the salary cap. The remaining room could be used to sign second rd. pick Talen Horton-Tucker to a 2+ contract.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Free agent guard Alex Caruso has agreed to a one-year deal to return to the Lakers, league source tells ESPN.
Bobby Marks: Looks like the remaining room for LAL goes to Caruso. The Lakers would could still have the $4.8M room ML. Roster is now up to 13.
Tania Ganguli: The Lakers are extending qualifying offers to Alex Caruso and Johnathan Williams. Williams becomes a two-way player if he accepts.
Dave McMenamin: Can confirm LA Times report that the Lakers will extend qualifying offers to Alex Caruso and Johnathan Williams. LAL will be challenged with filling out the roster with young players after the AD trade. Caruso, in particular, has a lot of fans in the organization.
Eric Pincus: Some detail on Caruso qualifying offer. Takes up $1.6 mil in space (but removes $900k roster fee) . If revoked, cap hold drops to $1.4 mil. If he agrees to sign at min, they can revoke, renounce and he's off their cap. Then when over, sign him at min. Rights restore in 2020
After the first signings for the next season, Pargo had shown skepticism about his potential stability in Tel Aviv but at the beginning of July, the talks between the two sides started to intensify again. Maccabi was looking also at the other options, including Alex Caruso, a source told Sportando. Caruso was considered as a main target by Maccabi, a source told Sportando, but the player is still under contract with the Los Angeles Lakers and, for the moment, the NBA franchise has no intention to part ways with him, a league source told Sportando.
The Los Angeles Lakers have signed guard Alex Caruso to a two-way contract, it was announced today by General Manager Rob Pelinka. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not released.
The Lakers are signing Alex Caruso, their summer league sensation, to a two year deal. It'll be a two-way contract so he can also develop in the GLeague.
Chris Reichert: Caruso becomes the second player to sign a 2-year, two-way deal along with Sumner in Indiana #GLeague
April 14, 2021 | 9:05 am EDT Update
The biggest reason why is because Capela has played at an All-Defense level, and he should be in the conversation for Defensive Player of the Year, alongside guys like Rudy Gobert, Ben Simmons, Bam Adebayo and Myles Turner. The Hawks are 6.7 points worse defensively when Capela sits this season. “I think he’s been probably one of the most consistent guys on the defensive end of the floor for us,” Nate McMillan said. “He has been helping us all season long. He’s not only been helping in blocking shots and rotating to the basketball, but rebounding at an elite level. What he’s been doing now, he’s been doing it all season for us. What we are trying to do is not have to have him clean up on the perimeter where we’re guarding and not keeping the ball in front so that he can stay attached to his man and rebound the basketball. With the adjustment for a center in today’s game, you’re not defending low-post or post-up players a lot in this league. You’re out on the perimeter having to help defend these quick guards in pick and rolls and make adjustments to get back to a shooter that can spread the floor. The consistency has been there all season long.”
When opponents do drive on him and try attacking at the rim, they’re only shooting 50.2 percent against Capela. That’s sixth-tenths of a percentage point worse than Gobert, who’s seen as one of the favorites in the DPOY race. I, myself, questioned before the start of the season if Capela was going to be as good as the Hawks talked him up to be and what they, frankly, needed him to be because of the center depth. He was never this good for the Rockets, but he’s been a godsend for this organization after having arguably the worst center depth rotation last season. Capela is not only third in the NBA in blocks, first in rebounds, but he’s also second in DRAPM, second in DRPM and second in defensive RAPTOR, all advanced metrics that Gobert ranks first in. This story isn’t about why Capela should win the award, only how he needs to be in the conversation. As someone who voted for the league’s awards last season, Capela would be on my ballot with Gobert and Simmons; and he would be on my second-team All-Defense.
When Sandiford-Artest watches Doncic, he’s as fascinated as much by his savvy as his skill, readily admitting that he would have had his hands full trying to slow down the Mavs’ star. “Luka, I mean, that kid is special,” Sandiford-Artest said. “I’m not going to lie to you, [defending him] would have been tough. What impresses me most is he’s a veteran at  years old. The way he sees it and feels it, he’s someone that I would have had problems with, because he would have been thinking ahead. He’d have been thinking steps ahead. He’s not one-dimensional.
At this moment, the 6-foot-4, 220-pound Allen drops into a defensive stance. He pretends to shade Doncic to the supersized point guard’s left. “Go right. Do whatever you’re going to do,” Allen yells, sliding as he speaks. “You going to drive and lay it up? All right, I’m going to contest. Can you step back going right? OK then! You’re going to have to do everything to that right side. And what if you try to come back? I’m right here, motherf—er. I’m taking it! “You can’t get discouraged with prolific players. They’re going to score, but your job is to contain it and cut it down.
“If I can be a little physical with him and make him work a little bit more, a lot like [defending] Steve Nash. Now when it comes time to finish plays, maybe he’s not as geared to finish the plays quite like he was in the beginning, because he’s being pressured a little bit. Now he has to worry about what I’m doing from the standpoint of making him work, work, work while he has the ball and bringing it up the floor. “It’s not something comfortable. Yes, he can do it. But does he want to do it? Probably not.”
April 14, 2021 | 6:56 am EDT Update
Though the Knicks made a very light push for Ball at the March 25 trade deadline, the Bulls did a lot more of the talking with Pelicans general manager David Griffin. If Ball were to leave, Chicago would be the Knicks’ top competitor, according to sources.
Because of luxury-tax concerns, the feeling around the league is the Pelicans may pass on matching any offer over $20 million per season with rookie lottery-pick point guard Kira Lewis and combo guard Nickeil Alexander-Walker in the fold. The Post reported Ball has the Knicks on his radar. His father, LaVar, had hoped Ball’s youngest brother, LaMelo, would be drafted by the Knicks last November — wanting him to play amid the bright lights of New York City.
The Dallas Mavericks received calls before the March 25 trade deadline regarding backup guard Jalen Brunson, but they were not interested in dealing the ex-Villanova star. ESPN’s Brian Windhorst relayed that news on his Brian Windhorst & The Hoop Collective podcast (h/t RealGM Wiretap). “By the way, I heard that around the trade deadline the Mavericks got some calls about Jalen Brunson. And it basically like ‘Luka’s obviously untouchable and Jalen is pretty much untouchable. If you’re going to offer LeBron, we’ll listen.’ “He’s being viewed as a foundational core piece going forward.”