Three former Bruins dotted the line on new contracts after spending a brief time in NBA free agency.
Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine and Golden State Warriors forward Kevon Looney are returning to their respective teams, cashing in on multi-year extensions Friday. LaVine signed a five-year, $215 million dollar max contract with the Bulls, while Looney is returning to the Bay Area on a three-year, $25.5 million deal.
Kyle Anderson, another UCLA men's basketball alumnus, left the Memphis Grizzlies and signed a two-year, $18 million contract with the Minnesota Timberwolves.
The trio becomes the latest former Bruins to secure their futures in professional basketball, with a separate trio of NBA Draft prospects leaving Westwood for the Association themselves a week earlier.
LaVine – who spent one season in Westwood from 2013 to 2014 – has been a member of the Bulls since 2017 and will be entering his seventh season in Chicago. In the 2021-2022 regular season, LaVine started the most games in his career, reaching 67 appearances only interrupted by an extended COVID-19 break.
The Washington state native also appeared in the NBA Playoffs for the first time in his career, averaging 19.8 points per game as the Bulls dropped their first-round series to the Milwaukee Bucks.
After winning the NBA Championship for the third time with the Warriors, Looney entered free agency for the second time in his career. The former one-and-done student-athlete with the Bruins became a vital force in the Golden State frontcourt during the playoffs.
Looney started 13 of the 22 games the Warriors played en route to the franchise’s seventh championship. The 6-foot-9 big man also accomplished personal statistical bests in both the regular season and playoffs.
In 82 regular season games – 80 of which being starts – Looney averaged 6.0 points, 7.3 rebounds and 2.0 assists per game, while in the postseason, the Wisconsin-born forward averaged 5.8 points, 7.6 rebounds and 2.2 assists a night. The rebound and assists totals Looney tallied were the highest marks he had achieved in his career.
Instead of signing with different teams, LaVine and Looney chose to re-up with the teams they have spent the majority of their careers with. The Warriors drafted Looney back in 2015, and while the Minnesota Timberwolves were the ones to draft LaVine, they traded him to the Bulls five years ago.
LaVine and Looney’s paths in Westwood were separated by one year. LaVine appeared in a sixth man role for a then-Steve Alford-led Bruins and Looney starred as a starting forward/center in the year following.
Anderson was a sophomore in LaVine's freshman year, averaging 14.6 points, 8.8 rebounds and 6.5 assists per game en route to All-Pac-12 First Team honors. He was the No. 30 overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, then spent four seasons with the San Antonio Spurs and four more with the Grizzlies.
Anderson, LaVine and Looney were named to the Pac-12 All-Freshman Team in 2013, 2014 and 2015, respectively.