Should LA Lakers Keep Kent Bazemore?

It's well known that the Los Angeles Lakers only have three players currently under contract for the 2014-15 season, meaning basically everyone on the roster—aside from Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash and Robert Sacre—is a free agent this summer.

One of the guys that L.A. will have to make a decision on is Kent Bazemore.

Acquired from the Golden State Warriors in the Steve Blake deal, Bazemore was known more for his crazy bench celebrations than his play before his arrival in Los Angeles.

But the second-year guard showed that he's got some game as well.

Bazemore averaged 13 points, three rebounds and three assists in 28 minutes a game for the Lakers, cracking the starting lineup in 15 of his 23 appearances.

So, should the Lakers hang on to Bazemore? Here are the cases for and against.


The Case For Bazemore

Bazemore has an intriguing skill set that can be put to good use if developed properly.

He's a slasher at heart, with a quick first step and the athleticism to finish around the rim. 

In addition to his off-the-bounce attacks, Bazemore flashed a solid three-point stroke, connecting on 37 percent of his attempts from beyond the arc.

The Old Dominion product can make plays for others too. He began looking for his teammates more toward the end of the season, averaging 4.1 assists over his last nine games.

If he can refine his game and cut out the mistakes, he would be a great sixth-man type off the bench along the lines of Manu Ginobili—another lefty slasher who can shoot from deep and create for teammates.

For comparison's sake, here is how Ginobili and Bazemore stack up statistically in their second NBA seasons, respectively:

Ginobili (2004): 29.4 MPG 12.8 PPG 4.5 RPG 3.8 APG 1.8 SPG .536 TS% 18.5 PER Bazemore (2014): 28.0 MPG 13.1 PPG 3.3 RPG 3.1 APG 1.3 SPG ...

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