Report: Lakers Expected to Sign J.R. Smith Ahead of NBA Restart

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The Lakers are expected to finalize a deal with free-agent shooting guard J.R. Smith ahead of the NBA's resumption in Orlando next month, according to The New York Times' Marc Stein.

Stein reports the deal is expected to happen before the NBA's "transaction window" closes at 11:59 p.m. ET Tuesday. Rosters for the NBA restart at Walt Disney World must be submitted to the league office Wednesday.

Smith became a rumored candidate to replace Avery Bradley after he said he decided to opt-out of playing in the NBA's July restart, citing family concerns. The deal would reunite Smith with his former Cavaliers teammates LeBron James. 

Smith has gone unsigned this season and played in just 11 games during the 2018-19 season. He and James played together for 3.5 seasons during James' second stint in Cleveland. During Smith's time with the Cavaliers, he averaged at least 28 minutes per game each year.

Smith, 34, was a first-round pick in the 2004 NBA draft. He is set to turn 35 this September.

Throughout the NBA's hiatus, Smith was seen in Los Angeles biking alongside James and Lakers star big man Anthony Davis.

The Lakers (49-14) held the best record in the Western Conference when the NBA halted play March 11. The league plans to resume the 2019-20 season on July 30.