DEAL CONFIRMED: It is the club options for the third and fourth years of the contract

NASHVILLE,TN - MARCH 11, 2016 - Tennessee Volunteers Head Coach Rick Barnes during the SEC Basketball Tournament game between the LSU Tigers and the Tennessee Volunteers at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, TN. Photo By Craig Bisacre/Tennessee Athletics

Dalton Knecht signs rookie deal with the Lakers

It wasn’t exactly how anyone drew it up, but Dalton Knecht ended up in a pretty good spot. His tumble down the draft board last week ended up pushing him all the way down to No. 17 overall with the Los Angeles Lakers.

Today, Knecht has signed his rookie contract.

The deal has an average salary of $4.6 million per year. He’ll make $3.8 million during his rookie season in 2024-25. The Lakers hold club options for the third and fourth years of the contract. Knecht will become a restricted free agent in 2028

.Lakers Rumors: Dalton Knecht Signs Rookie Contract

The 6-6 guard was a projected top ten selection in last week’s NBA Draft, but he ended up sliding — reportedly due to defensive concerns along with his age. However, the 23-year-old now gets a chance to have a role on a potential playoff team as LeBron James ramps up for one final push towards the NBA Finals.

He also becomes the first draft pick of new head coach JJ Redick.

“I was joking with Coach Redick upstairs that we’ve found a movement shooter to match his skills as a player, and he was already at his whiteboard drawing up pindowns and ATO and actions where he could run a movement shooter off screen,” Lakers VP of basketball operations Rob Pelinka said last week. “I think his mind is already working on drawing up plays for Dalton.”

Knecht will bring instant offense and perimeter shooting to Los Angeles. In his lone season in Knoxville, Knecht shot 39.7 percent from three-point range. He averaged 21.7 points per game, scoring 30+ points on eight different occasions. Rick Barnes ran his offense through Knecht last season, utilizing his shooting coming off of screens and letting Dalton use his size and strength while attacking the rim. The result ended up being an SEC Player of the Year trophy and a runner-up finish in the National Player of the Year voting.

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