Lakers nearing a one-year deal with forward Earl Clark – Sports Out West
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Lakers nearing a one-year deal with forward Earl Clark

The Los Angeles Lakers could soon receive some much-needed help to their depleted roster with the team nearing a one-year deal with forward Earl Clark, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports.

The 26-year-old has bounced around the league since leaving Los Angeles playing for the Cleveland Cavaliers and New York Knicks. He has most recently played for the Rio Grande Valley Vipers of the D-League, which he is averaging 29 points per game in four appearances.

Clark was originally acquired from the Orlando Magic as part of the trade that helped the team land Dwight Howard, and he proved to be quite a find for the team. He posted career highs in points (7.3) and rebounds (5.5) per game in 59 appearances with 36 starts in the 2012-13 season. He also filled in as a starter when the injury bug hit both Howard and Pau Gasol.

His addition would provide the team with some depth at small forward and power forward, especially with the loss of both Xavier Henry (Achilles) and Julius Randle (leg) for the entire season.

The team has the ability to sign the five-year veteran due to two disabled player exceptions that were granted by the NBA to the team for both Randle ($1.5 million) and Steve Nash ($4.85 million).

This allows for the Lakers to sign a free agent or trade for a player that is in the final year of their contract that is worth up to $10,000 more than the value of each exception. They are both set to expire on March 10, and cannot be combined.

Los Angeles is currently sitting at the league-maximum of 15 players under contract, and is looking into applying for a hardship exception from the league to add a 16th player to the roster. If granted, the Lakers would need to trim the roster back down to 15 when Ryan Kelly returns from his torn right hamstring injury.

Photo Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

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Bob Garcia IV

Bob Garcia IV is a sports journalist from Southern California. He's currently the Los Angeles Lakers beat writer for Sports Out West. He's also currently a sports freelance writer for Sports Uncut. He's also the beat writer for LA Rams Report for Scout.com, which is a website dedicated to covering the Rams. Lastly, he was a reporter for the award-winning newspaper, The Daily Sundial, at California State University, Northridge. You can follow him on Twitter, @BGarcia90.
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